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A Manual of Practice

January 2012
Sustainable Concrete Pavements:
A Manual of Practice
January 2012

Dr. Peter Taylor, Associate Director
National Concrete Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University

Dr. Tom Van Dam, Principal Engineer, CTLGroup

(previously, Program Director, Materials and Sustainability Group, Applied Pavement Technology)

Dr. Tom Van Dam, Principal Engineer, CTLGroup
(previously, Program Director, Materials and Sustainability Group, Applied Pavement Technology)

Dr. Peter Taylor, Associate Director

National Concrete Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University

Mr. Gary Fick, Vice President

Trinity Construction Management Services, Inc.

Dr. David Gress, Assistant Director

Recycled Materials Resource Center, University of New Hampshire

Ms. Martha VanGeem, Principal Engineer, CTLGroup

Ms. Emily Lorenz, Engineer, CTLGroup

Ms. Marcia Brink, National Concrete Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University

Ms. Mina Shin, Consulting Graphic Designer

Funded by the Federal Highway Administration (DTFH61-06-H-00011 (Work Plan 23))

Institute for Transportation, Iowa State University Research Park, 2711 South Loop Drive, Suite 4700, Ames, IA
Printed in the United States of America January 2012

Sustainable Concrete Pavements: A Manual of Practice

ISBN: 978-0-9820144-2-4

This document fills a priority communications need identified in the Sustainability Track (Track 12) of the Long-
Term Plan for Concrete Pavement Research and Technology, a national research plan jointly developed by the
concrete pavement stakeholder community ( index.cfm).


Tom Cackler, Director The mission of the National Concrete Pavement Tech-
Sabrina Shields-Cook, Managing Editor nology Center is to unite key transportation stake-
holders around the central goal of advancing concrete
National Concrete Pavement Technology Center pavement technology through research, tech transfer,
Iowa State University Research Park and technology implementation.
2711 S. Loop Drive, Suite 4700
Ames, IA 50010-8664
515-294-7124 Unless otherwise indicated in the text, all photographs and illustrations used in this guide were provided by the technical editor and co-author Dr. Peter Taylor.

The contents of this report reflect the views of the authors, who are responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the information presented
herein. The opinions, findings, and conclusions expressed in this publication are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the spon-
sors. The sponsors assume no liability for the contents or use of the information contained in this document. This report does not consti-
tute a standard, specification, or regulation. The sponsors do not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturers names
appear in this report only because they are considered essential to the objective of the document.

Iowa State University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, sex,
marital status, disability, genetic testing, or status as a U.S. veteran. Inquiries can be directed to the Director of Equal Opportunity and Diver-
sity, Iowa State University, 3680 Beardshear Hall, 515-294-7612.
LIST OF FIGURES..................................... vii Thin Concrete Pavement Design.......................... 22
Pervious Concrete................................................. 23
LIST OF TABLES.......................................viii 5. References............................................................23

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS............................. ix Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE

PAVEMENT MATERIALS........................... 25
PREFACE................................................... x
1. Cementitious Materials........................................26
More Efficient Clinker Production.......................... 27
Ch. 1. INTRODUCTION.............................. 1 Reducing Portland Cement Clinker in Cement.. 27
1. What is Sustainability?...........................................2 Reducing Cementitious Contents in Concrete... 28
2. Concrete Pavements and Sustainability...............2 Reduce Concrete Used Over the Life Cycle........ 28

3. Why Should the Concrete Pavement Industry 2. Supplementary Cementitious Materials..............29

Care about Sustainability?....................................3 3. Emerging Cementitious Systems.........................30
4. Organization of This Manual..................................4 4. Aggregates...........................................................30
5. References..............................................................6 Gradation.............................................................. 31
Aggregate Type..................................................... 31
Natural................................................................... 31
Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY Durability................................................................ 32
CONCEPTS........................................... 7 5. Water.....................................................................33
1. A Systems Approach
6. Admixtures............................................................34
Seeing the Big Picture.........................................8
7. Reinforcement......................................................34
2. Concrete Pavements............................................10
8. Proportioning........................................................35
Design Phase......................................................... 11
Materials ............................................................... 11 9. References............................................................35
Operations............................................................. 12
Preservation and Rehabilitation........................... 12
Reconstruction and Recycling............................. 13 Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION........................... 37
3. Importance of Innovation....................................13 1. Overview of Construction Issues Related to
4. References............................................................14
2. Traditional Slipform Paving Processes and
Impacts on Sustainability.....................................38
Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE Establishing and Operating a Plant Site.............. 38
CONCRETE PAVEMENTS......................... 15 Stockpiling Aggregate.......................................... 39
1. Context-Sensitive Design......................................16 Establishing and Maintaining Haul Routes.......... 40
Concrete Production............................................. 40
2. Concrete Pavement Design: The State of the Transporting Concrete.......................................... 42
Practice.................................................................17 Concrete Placement and Finishing..................... 43
3. Design Attributes Directly Enhancing Surface Texturing................................................... 44
Sustainability........................................................18 Curing Concrete................................................... 44
Sawing and Sealing Joints................................... 45
4. Alternative and Emerging Design
Technologies .......................................................18 3. New Developments in Concrete Pavement That
Could Improve Sustainability...............................45
Two-Lift Concrete Pavement................................. 19
Precast Concrete Pavement Systems................... 20 Two Lift Concrete Pavements................................ 45
Roller-Compacted Concrete Pavement.............. 21 Roller-Compacted Concrete................................ 46
Interlocking Concrete Pavers................................ 22
4. References............................................................46

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice v

CONTENTS, continued


1. Vehicle Fuel Consumption...................................48 URBAN ENVIRONMENT........................... 77
2. Other Environmental Impacts During Use ..........49 1. The Urban Environment........................................78

Solar Reflectance.................................................. 49 2. Reducing Environmental Impacts in the Urban

Lighting.................................................................. 50 Environment..........................................................78
Carbonation.......................................................... 51 Light, Reflective Surfaces....................................... 78
Run-Off and Leachate........................................... 51 Reduced Emissions, Enhanced Fuel Efficiency.... 79
Traffic Delays.......................................................... 51 Reduced Waste .................................................... 80
3. Summary..............................................................52 Reduced Storm Water Run-off .............................. 80

4. References............................................................52 3. Reducing Societal Impacts in the Urban

Enhanced Aesthetics............................................ 81
Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL.55 Noise Mitigation.................................................... 82
1. Pavement Renewal Concepts.............................56 Health and Safety.................................................. 82
2. Pavement Evaluation Overview...........................57 Reduced User Delays............................................ 82

3. Preventive Maintenance Treatments...................58 4. Summary..............................................................83

Partial-Depth Repair.............................................. 58 5. References............................................................83

Full-Depth Repair................................................... 59
Load Transfer Restoration...................................... 60
Diamond Grinding................................................ 61
Summary................................................................ 62 SUSTAINABILITY...................................... 85
4. Rehabilitation.......................................................62 1. Why Assessments are Important.........................86

Bonded Concrete Overlays.................................. 62 2. Economic and Environmental Analyses .............86

Unbonded Concrete Overlays............................. 64 Economic Analysis................................................ 86
5. Summary..............................................................65 Environmental Assessment................................... 87
3. Rating Systems.....................................................91
6. References............................................................66
GreenLITES............................................................. 91
4. Summary..............................................................95
CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES................. 67
1. Introduction to Recycled Concrete ....................68 5. References and Resources..................................96

2. RCA Properties .....................................................68

Physical Properties................................................. 69
Chemical Properties ............................................. 69 VELOPMENTS.......................................... 97
Mechanical Properties ......................................... 70 1. Review...................................................................98
3. RCA used in Concrete..........................................70 Pavement Sustainability Concepts...................... 98
Designing Sustainable Concrete Pavements...... 98
Properties of Plastic RCA Concrete ...................... 70 Selecting Materials................................................ 98
Properties of Hardened RCA Concrete ............... 70 Construction.......................................................... 99
4. RCA in Foundations..............................................72 The Use Phase ...................................................... 99
RCA as Unbound Base Material........................... 72 Pavement Renewal............................................. 100
RCA as Drainable Base ........................................ 73 End of Life ............................................................ 100
RCA as Stabilized Base.......................................... 73 Urban Environment ............................................. 100
Assessment ......................................................... 101
5. Recycled Concrete in Other Applications .........74
2. Innovation...........................................................101
6. References............................................................74

vi Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Figure 2.1 Illustration of the current industrial Figure 5.3 Stockpiling aggregate with a radial
system........................................................................ 8 stacker..................................................................... 40
Figure 2.2 Illustration of the regenerative circular Figure 5.4 Central mix concrete plant...................... 41
economy................................................................... 9 Figure 5.5 Ready mix concrete plant........................ 41
Figure 2.3 The concrete pavement life cycle.............. 9 Figure 5.6 Transit mix concrete truck......................... 42
Figure 2.4 Features of concrete pavements that can Figure 5.7 Tractor trailer concrete hauling unit......... 42
enhance sustainability........................................... 11
Figure 5.8 Washout pit used to clean concrete
Figure 3.1 RoboTex scans of 100200 mm samples trucks....................................................................... 42
showing variability of transverse tined surface
and its effect on noise level.................................... 16 Figure 5.9 Longitudinal tining.................................... 44

Figure 3.2 Two-lift pavement being constructed Figure 5.10 Artificial turf drag texture......................... 44
in Kansas................................................................. 19 Figure 5.11 Diamond-ground texture........................ 44
Figure 3.3 Precast pavement being installed........... 20 Figure 5.12 Top lift being placed on the bottom lift
Figure 3.4 RCC pavement being placed................. 21 ................................................................................. 46

Figure 3.5 Permeable interlocking concrete paver Figure 5.13 Two-lift paving on I-70 in Kansas............. 46
blocks make an aesthetically pleasing, well- Figure 5.14 RCC placement...................................... 46
drained pavement for low-volume streets and
Figure 6.1 Ecoprofile of different life-cycle phases
parking lots.............................................................. 22
from a typical road................................................. 48
Figure 3.6 Vehicular interlocking concrete pavers
Figure 6.2 Heat islands for various areas of
being placed in a historic downtown area (note
development........................................................... 50
the use of colored concrete to provide a visual
offset for the crosswalk).......................................... 22 Figure 6.3 Effect of pavement type and albedo on
pavement surface temperature............................. 50
Figure 3.7 Pervious concrete being placed............. 23
Figure 6.4 Depth of carbonation determined by the
Figure 4.1 A cement kiln............................................ 26
phenolphthalein test (pink two-thirds of the sam-
Figure 4.2 CO2 generation in cement ple is not carbonated)........................................... 51
manufacturing........................................................ 26
Figure 6.5 Traffic delays caused by construction..... 52
Figure 4.3 Scanning electron micrograph of C-S-H
Figure 7.1 Typical pavement performance
and CaOH crystals.................................................. 27
curve showing ideal times for the application of
Figure 4.4 Backscatter electron image of fly ash pavement preservation, rehabilitation, and recon-
particles................................................................... 29 struction................................................................... 56
Figure 4.5 Petrographic optical micrograph of slag Figure 7.2 Comparison of treatment costs at
cement particles..................................................... 30 different pavement condition ratings (PCRs)........ 56
Figure 4.6 Reduction of cementitious content with Figure 7.3 Illustration of typical impacts of
increasing coarse aggregate size......................... 31 preventive maintenance and rehabilitation on
Figure 4.7 Rounded (left) and crushed natural concrete pavement condition............................... 57
aggregates.............................................................. 31 Figure 7.4 Damaged material has been milled out
Figure 4.8 Light-weight fine aggregate..................... 32 in a partial-depth repair......................................... 59

Figure 4.9 Air-entrained concrete.............................. 34 Figure 7.5 Illustration of distress extent, with distress
at the bottom of the slab extending beyond that
Figure 4.10 Reinforcing for CRCP............................... 35 observed at the surface......................................... 59
Figure 5.1 Initial construction quality helps realize the Figure 7.6 Schematic illustration of load transfer
designed long-term performance........................ 37 restoration................................................................ 60
Figure 5.2 Front-end loader used for stockpiling Figure 7.7 Dowel bars on chairs with end caps and
aggregate............................................................... 40 compressible inserts in place ready to be inserted
into prepared slots.................................................. 60

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice vii

LIST OF FIGURES, continued

Figure 7.8 Diamond ground surface after years of Figure 9.5 Modern Blome Granitoid concrete
service..................................................................... 61 pavement................................................................ 81
Figure 7.9 Typical applications for bonded and Figure 9.6 A potentially quiet surface (viewed from
unbonded concrete overlays on existing concrete the side).................................................................. 82
and asphalt/composite pavements..................... 63 Figure 10.1 An LCI accounts for all materials and
Figure 7.10 Bonded overlay....................................... 64 energy needed to make and use a product, and
Figure 7.11 Unbonded overlay.................................. 65 the emissions to air, land, and water associated
with making and using that product .................... 88
Figure 8.1 Recycled concrete aggregate (RCA)..... 68
Figure 10.2 Three alternatives used in a limited LCA
Figure 9.1 Photocatalytically active colored to determine environmental impact of design
concrete pavers in Japan...................................... 79 and material choices............................................. 90
Figure 9.2 Pervious concrete..................................... 80 Figure 10.3 Results of the LCA of the three Kansas
Figure 9.3 Water passing through pervious two-lift alternatives.................................................. 91
concrete.................................................................. 80
Figure 9.4 Blome Granitoid concrete pavement
constructed in 1906 in Calumet, Michigan; the
brick pattern was stamped into the surface to
keep horses from slipping...................................... 81

Table 5.1 Summary of Concrete Pavement Table 7.3 Pre-Overlay Repair Recommendations for
Construction Practices That Enhance Pavement Unbonded Concrete Overlays...............................65
Sustainability...........................................................39 Table 10.1 Relevant Mixture Design Features in the
Table 5.2 Concrete Pavement Surface Texture Kansas Two-lift LCA Evaluation................................90
Types........................................................................44 Table 10.2 GreenLITES Certification Levels................91
Table 7.1 Pre-Overlay Repair Recommendations for
Table 10.3 Greenroads Certification Levels..............93
Bonded Concrete Overlays....................................63
Table 7.2 Recommended Transverse Joint Spacing
for Unbonded Concrete Overlay...........................65

viii Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice


The co-authors and the National Concrete Pavement Dr. Anthony Fiorato, Executive Director,
Technology Center are grateful to the many knowl- Slag Cement Association
edgeable and experienced professionals, public and
private, who contributed to the development of this Mr. Dale Harrington, Principal Senior Engineer, Snyder
guide. First and foremost, we are indebted to the Fed- and Associates, Inc.
eral Highway Administration (FHWA) for its gener- Mr. Brian Killingsworth, Senior Director of Pavement
ous support and sponsorship (DTFH61-06-H-00011, Structures, National Ready Mixed Concrete Association
Work Plan 23). The agency recognized a critical infor-
mation need within the national concrete pavement Mr. Steve Kosmatka, Vice President of Research and
community and made the commitment to fill it. Technical Services, Portland Cement Association

The content of this guide reflects the expertise and Mr. Lionel Lemay, Senior Vice President of Sustainable
contributions of the technical advisory committee, Development, National Ready Mixed Concrete
whose members represent the wide variety of discrete Association
processes and variables, including regional issues, that
Mr. Kevin McMullen, Director,
must be considered to effectively optimize the sus-
Wisconsin Concrete Pavement Association
tainability of concrete pavements. While the authors
generated the overall content, it was the technical advi- Mr. Joep Meijer, President, The Right Environment
sory committees careful reviews of drafts, thoughtful
discussions, and suggestions for revisions and refine- Dr. Steve Muench, Associate Professor of
ments that make this guide a straightforward, compre- Environmental and Civil Engineering, University of
hensive resource for practitioners. We appreciate the Washington
invaluable assistance of the committee members:
Mr. Andrew Pinneke, LEED and Sustainable
Mr. Fares Abdo, former Program Manager for Water Construction Coordinator, Lafarge North America
Resources, Portland Cement Association
Mr. Tim Smith, past Director, Transportation and
Ms. Gina Ahlstrom, Pavement Engineer, Public Works, Cement Association of Canada
Federal Highway Administration
Dr. Mark Snyder, Vice President, Pennsylvania
Ms. Janet Attarian, Project Director, Department of Chapter, American Concrete Pavement Association
Transportation Streetscape and Sustainable Design
Dr. Michael Sprinkel, Associate Director, Virginia
Program, City of Chicago
Transportation Research Council
Mr. Barry Descheneaux, Holcim
Dr. Larry Sutter, Director, Michigan Tech
Mr. James Duit, President, Duit Construction Transportation Institute, Michigan Technological
Ms. Kelsey Edwardsen, Structural Engineer, Bechtel
Mr. Sam Tyson, Task Manager, Concrete Pavement
Ms. Dulce Rufino Feldman, Transportation Engineer, Technology Program, Federal Highway Administration
California Department of Transportation
Mr. Leif Wathne, Vice President, American Concrete
Pavement Association

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice ix


Sustainable Concrete Pavements: A Manual of Practice is they will find chapters addressing issues specific to
a product of the National Concrete Pavement Tech- pavement sustainability in the urban environment and
nology Center at Iowa State Universitys Institute for to the evaluation of pavement sustainability.
Transportation, with funding from the Federal High-
Development of this guide satisfies a critical need
way Administration (DTFH61-06-H-00011, Work
identified in the Sustainability Track (Track 12) of the
Plan 23). Developed as a more detailed follow-up to a
Long-Term Plan for Concrete Pavement Research and
2009 briefing document, Building Sustainable Pavement
Technology (CP Road Map). The CP Road Map is a
with Concrete, this guide provides a clear, concise, and
national research plan jointly developed by the con-
cohesive discussion of pavement sustainability con-
crete pavement stakeholder community, including Fed-
cepts and of recommended practices for maximizing
eral Highway Administration, academic institutions,
the sustainability of concrete pavements.
state departments of transportation, and concrete pave-
The intended audience includes decision makers mentrelated industries. It outlines 12 tracks of prior-
and practitioners in both owner-agencies and supply, ity research needs related to concrete pavements. CP
manufacturing, consulting, and contractor businesses. Road Map publications and other operations support
Readers will find individual chapters with the most services are provided by the National Concrete Pave-
recent technical information and best practices related ment Technology Center at Iowa State University. For
to concrete pavement design, materials, construction, details about the CP Road Map, see www.cproadmap.
use/operations, renewal, and recycling. In addition, org/index.cfm.

x Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Chapter 1

Tom Van Dam

Peter Taylor

It is becoming increasingly apparent that a host of developing realization that the environmental and
human activities and development practices are social impacts of these pavements systems are great.
negatively affecting the economic, environmental, and
social well-being of the planet, putting future genera- The people responsible for the management, design,
tions of humanity, as well as of other species, at risk. construction, maintenance, and rehabilitation of the
Confronted with this reality, stakeholders in the pave- deteriorating network of pavements are overwhelmed,
ment industry are being challenged to adopt practices recognizing that the current approach to solving prob-
that maintain economic vitality while balancing envi- lems inherent in the nations pavement infrastructure is
ronmental and societal needs. not sustainable. What is needed is a new approach, the
implementation of truly sustainable pavement solu-
At the same time, stakeholders are facing other chal- tions that result in reduced economic cost over the life
lenges: Pavements are aging and deteriorating; one- cycle, lessened environmental impact, and enhanced
third of the road system, about 1.3 million miles, is in societal benefit, while maintaining the system in a high
poor condition or worse, receiving a grade of D- in the level of service for perpetuity. Recognizing this, many
American Society of Civil Engineers report card (ASCE public agencies are adopting more sustainable prac-
2009A). Traffic volumes and vehicle loads continue tices and are beginning to rate, incentivize, and even
to increase, putting more demands on the already award projects based on their demonstrated ability to
stressed pavement system and, in major metropolitan enhance sustainability.
areas, resulting in serious congestion problems. Road-
way agency budgets continue to fall short of needed Yet, the basic questions remain: What is sustainability?
funds, with an estimated $115.7 billion annual short- What attributes of concrete pavements can make them
fall from funding required to substantially improve a sustainable choice? Why is an emphasis on sustain-
pavement conditions. These challenges exist not only ability important for the concrete pavement industry?
in a time of economic uncertainty but also within the
1. What is Sustainability? direction as to what must be done differently in the
future to improve upon the present. This manual
A basic definition of sustainability is the capacity to
provides such definitions and directions, as they are
maintain a process or state of being into perpetu-
currently understood, regarding concrete pavements.
ity, without exhausting the resources upon which it
depends nor degrading the environment in which it Balancing economic, environmental, and societal
operates. In the context of human activity, sustainabil- factors for a pavement project requires identifying
ity has been described as activity or development that applicable factors in each category, collecting data for
meets the needs of the present without compromis- the factors to be evaluated, applying tools to quantify
ing the ability of future generations to meet their own the impact of each factor, and assessing the combined
needs (WCED 1987). impact of the factors in relationship to one another.
Complicating the process is the fact that factors must
Typically, three general categories (or pillars) of sus-
be identified and measured/estimated during all stages
tainability are recognized: economic, environmental,
of a pavements lifedesign, materials selection, con-
and social. When activities are sustainable, no pillar is
struction, operation, preservation/rehabilitation, and
ignored; instead, a workable balance among the three
reconstruction/recycling. In other words, assessment
often-competing interests must be found. Together, the
of the sustainability of a project will require the use of
three pillars form what is commonly called the triple
a robust, sophisticated analysis.
bottom line (Elkington 1994). This concept can be
expressed graphically as shown in Figure 1.1, which It is recognized that a complete assessment of sus-
illustrates that sustainable solutions are those that tainability is beyond the current state of the practice
incorporate all elements of the triple bottom line. and, in truth, may be impossible. Still, the applica-
tion of available tools will assist in making incremen-
Although this is a common definition of sustainability,
tal progress in achieving more sustainable concrete
it is somewhat dissatisfying as it doesnt define what
is and is not important and it doesnt provide clear

2. Concrete Pavements and

Concrete pavements suffer from a perception that they
contribute a considerable amount of carbon dioxide
Growth (CO2) to the atmosphere due to the use of portland
cement that binds the aggregates together. Although
portland cement manufacturing is an energy intensive
Socio- Eco- process and does result in significant CO2 emissions,
Economic Efficiency
partly due to the pyroprocessing required and partly
due to the calcination of limestone (discussed in
Chapter 4), advances in cement production have
greatly decreased these impacts relative to even a few
Social Environmental
Progress Socio- Stewardship years ago. In addition, and just as important, modern
Environ- concrete for pavements uses less portland cement per
mental cubic yard relative to past practices, and thus concrete
pavements have a lower carbon footprint than at any
time in history. Further, future innovations will ensure
additional improvements in reducing the carbon
Figure 1.1 Graphical representation of sustainabilitys footprint and energy use over the next decade. When
triple-bottom line of economic, environmental, all aspects of sustainability are considered, especially
and societal considerations when accounting for the pavements life cycle,

2 Ch. 1. INTRODUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

properly designed and constructed concrete pavements 3. Why Should the Concrete
are clearly part of a sustainable transportation system.
Pavement Industry Care
Following are a few general attributes of concrete about Sustainability?
pavements that can make them a sustainable choice: Before considering strategies to increase sustainability, it
Long life: Achieving the desired design life with is first necessary to take a step back to consider why this
minimal future preservation activities results in is important to the concrete pavement industry.
reduced user delays and associated economic and First, sustainability is not really new; it simply raises the
environmental impacts over the life cycle. bar for good engineering. Good engineering has always
entailed working with limited resources to achieve an
Smooth, quiet, and safe over the life cycle: Motor-
objective. What has changed is the scope of the prob-
ists experience a comfortable ride; drag is mini-
lem, along with the period of time over which a project
mized for enhanced vehicle efficiency; pavement
is evaluated. Whereas in the past economic factors were
surface visibility and skid resistance are maximized
paramount, now environmental and social factors must
through minimal preservation activities.
be considered equally with economic factors. Whereas
Increased use of industrial residuals and reduced in the past initial costs and other initial impacts were
use of non-renewable resources. often paramount, now the span of time in the analysis
is increased to the entire life cycle of a project, and all
Fully recyclable. impacts (both positive and negative) are considered
from the point of inception (e.g., mining of raw materi-
Cost effective: Demonstrated over the life cycle,
als) to end of life (e.g., recycling). This type of analy-
concrete pavements preserve their equity long into
sis is often referred to as a cradle to cradle analysis
the future.
(McDonough and Braungart 2002).
Minimal impact to the surrounding environment:
Such an all-encompassing scope over such a long analy-
In-place concrete pavements have no adverse effect
sis period requires a systems approach to fully realize
on, and are not adversely affected by, atmospheric
the opportunities to implement sustainable design. At
conditions, the natural environment, etc.
this juncture, sustainable design is not about achiev-
Minimal traffic disruption during construction and ing perfection but about balancing competing and
preservation activities. often contradictory interests to bring about incremental
change. Although most civil engineers find the idea of
Community friendly: Aesthetically pleasing, appro- sustainability as the new standard for good engineering
priately textured, light colored surfaces reduce to be a challenging prospect, many find it engaging as
ambient noise, emissions, surface run-off, urban well. As sustainable design continues to evolve, so will
heat, and artificial lighting needs, resulting in a the role played by the concrete pavement industry.
positive local and global impact.
Second, sustainability is increasingly being demanded
Strategies for design, material selection, construction, by a diverse number of stakeholders. One major group
operation, maintenance/rehabilitation, and reconstruc- of stakeholders is the public. ASCEs Board of Direction
tion/recycling are already being implemented that recently approved the following statement (ASCE 2009B):
create concrete pavements with these attributes. Some
The publics growing awareness that it is possible
of these strategies have been part of standard practice
to achieve a sustainable built environment, while
for over 100 years, resulting in incredible longevity
addressing such challenges as natural and man-made
and cost effectiveness, the hallmarks of concrete pave-
disasters, adaptation to climate change, and global
ment. Others strategies, although demonstrated, are
water supply, is reinforcing the civil engineers chang-
in the initial phase of implementation. This manual of
ing role from designer/constructor to policy leader
practice focuses on concrete pavement strategies that
and life-cycle planner, designer, constructor, operator,
can be readily implemented to enhance sustainability.
and maintainer (sustainer).

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 1. INTRODUCTION 3

This statement recognizes that one of the driving to sustainability. Yet even ASCE, in the last sentence of
forces for the changing role of the civil engineer as a the Board of Directions statement cited earlier (ASCE
sustainer is the publics growing awareness that a 2009B), has recognized that civil engineers are often
more sustainable built environment is achievable. Civil perceived as part of the problem, not the solution:
engineers are being required to examine alternative Civil engineers are not perceived to be significant con-
solutions that a few years ago might not have been tributors to a sustainable world. With this backdrop it
considered. This idea is clearly annunciated in the is clear that, to attract the young talent needed for the
integrated global aspirational vision statement adopted future, industry must change such negative percep-
at The Summit on the Future of Civil Engineering held in tions through the advancement of sustainable concrete
2006, which stated that civil engineers are entrusted infrastructure, including pavements.
by society to create a sustainable world and enhance
the global quality of life (ASCE 2007). This is a large And, finally, enhancing sustainability will make the
aspiration, reflecting the responsibility entrusted by concrete pavement industry more innovative and more
the public to those charged with designing, construct- competitive. This can be observed already through
ing, operating, preserving, rehabilitating, and recycling such diverse innovations as in-place recycling of exist-
infrastructure including concrete pavements. ing concrete pavement, two-lift construction, safe and
quiet surface characteristics, pervious concrete, opti-
Another group of stakeholders, more directly rel- mized aggregate gradations that reduce cementitious
evant to the concrete pavement industry, includes material content, and the trend toward concrete with
local, state, and federal pavement owner agencies. As higher supplementary cementitious material (SCM),
mentioned previously, various agencies have begun to to name a few. Each of these examples clearly demon-
require that sustainability metrics be measured on pav- strates positive economic, environmental, and social
ing projects and may use such metrics in the selection impacts. Emerging concrete technologies that are
process for future transportation projects. poised to bring even more dramatic positive changes
include photocatalytic cements to treat air pollution,
Third, todays increasing focus on sustainable infra- carbon sequestering cements and aggregates, further
structure offers an opportunity for the concrete pave- increases in SCM content, embedded sensing tech-
ment industry to communicate the positive contribu- nologies for construction and infrastructure health
tions inherent in concrete pavement. Because of its monitoring, and advanced construction processes that
versatility, economy, local availability, and longevity, minimize energy use and emissions.
concrete is the most commonly used building material
on the planet; it is not hyperbole to say that modern The challenge to the industry is to step out of the box
civilization is literally built on concrete. Due to the and, instead of focusing on simply meeting existing
sheer volume of concrete in use and its many sustain- specifications, re-imagine what a concrete pavement
able attributes, it has a relatively large environmental can be and work with the various stakeholders to fur-
footprint as well as immense positive impacts on ther increase the economic, environmental, and social
sustainability. The concepts related to sustainability benefits inherent in concrete pavements.
provide a positive language through which industry
can communicate the good being done through the
use of concrete pavement rather than solely disputing 4. Organization of This Manual
unjustifiable perceptions of harm. Fortunately, many best practices already exist for con-
structing new concrete pavements as well as preserving
Fourth, adopting sustainability principles and practices
or rehabilitating existing ones in a manner that signifi-
will make the concrete pavement industry more attrac-
cantly contributes to the sustainability of the nations
tive to a younger workforce. Peter Senge et al. (2009),
highway system. Decision makers, engineers, material
in their book, The Necessary Revolution: How Individu-
suppliers, and contractors need practical guidance on
als and Organizations are Working Together to Create a
adopting these solutions and considering their relative
Sustainable World, state that employees are making
benefits in the context of limited budgets, increased
career choices based on an organizations commitment

4 Ch. 1. INTRODUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

performance requirements, and congested traffic situ- discussed. The chapter concludes with a discussion
ations. This manual of practice is designed to help, as of concrete making materials, with specific empha-
summarized in the following brief description of its sis on the use of recycled and industrial byproduct
chapters: materials used as aggregate.

1. Introduction This chapter generally defines 5. Construction Various elements of construction

sustainability and its significance for the concrete have an impact on the overall sustainability of a
pavement industry. concrete pavement. Obvious elements include the
energy consumed and waste generated during the
2. Pavement Sustainability Concepts This chapter constructions process, including emissions and
focuses on specific attributes of pavements, with a solid waste. Water use during the entire construc-
particular emphasis on concrete pavements, that tion process is another important element, as is
impact sustainability. The life cycle, including cra- the generation of noise and particulate matter,
dle-to-gate and ideal cradle-to-cradle closed loop especially as it relates to the social impact in urban
systems, is described. Technologies that extend environments. This chapter discusses these con-
pavement life and/or reduce the use of energy struction-related elements and presents strategies
intensive and environmentally damaging materi- to minimize the environmental aspects of concrete
als and practices will be emphasized. This chapter paving project.
presents a conceptual cradle to grave approach to
concrete pavement, introducing the specific topics 6. The Impact of the Use Phase The versatility of
discussed in detail in Chapters 3 through 10. concrete as a paving material offers many sustain-
able attributes that are not always obvious. Opera-
3. Designing Sustainable Concrete Pavements Sus- tional considerations are an extremely important
tainability is not an accident, instead requiring consideration, as it is estimated that at least 85
a thoughtful, systematic approach to concrete percent of the environmental footprint of a pave-
pavement design. Sustainable solutions make ment is incurred after it is built during its ser-
the best use of locally available materials with- vice life. The most prominent impact is from the
out compromising, and possibly even enhancing, vehicles operating on the pavement, most notably
pavement performance. Design attributes that have from the fuel consumed, which is influenced by
been shown to enhance sustainability, including pavement roughness and possibly by the stiffness
extended service life designs and two-lift construc- of the surface layer. Recent research has focused on
tion, are featured, but emerging concrete pavement the influence of radiative forcing, which is related
systems including precast concrete pavements and to surface reflectivity and may be contributing to
thin concrete pavements are also introduced. global climate change even from rural pavements
4. Sustainable Concrete Pavement Materials Materi- (impacts in the urban environment are addressed
als used to make concrete for pavements have a separately in Chapter 9).
large impact on the sustainability of the pavement. 7. Concrete Pavement Renewal Preservation and
This chapter details the importance of making rehabilitation play an important role in ensuring
durable concrete that withstands the environ- concrete pavement longevity while maintaining the
ment during its service life. It also emphasizes the highest level of serviceability. As such, they directly
need to use the appropriate amount of cementing contribute to the sustainability of the concrete
materials, discussing the advantages of reducing pavement. This chapter discusses various pres-
portland cement through good mixture design and ervation and rehabilitation strategies that can be
the use of supplementary cementitious materials, applied to increase concrete pavement sustainabil-
including fly ash and slag cement. The emergence ity, directing the reader to appropriate sources for
of lower energy, lower emissions cements (includ- further information. The main focus of this chapter
ing portland-limestone cements, carbon neutral/ is on how timely and appropriate preservation and
sequestering cements, and geopolymers) is also rehabilitation can be used to enhance sustainability

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 1. INTRODUCTION 5

over the life cycle. The uses of diamond grinding 11. Conclusions and Future Developments This chap-
and concrete overlays are featured. ter briefly summarizes the information presented in
this manual. It also discusses emerging technolo-
8. End of Life Recycling Concepts and Strategies gies that are not yet ready for implementation but
This chapter discusses the recycling of existing have the potential to significantly impact concrete
road materials into new pavement. The focus is on pavement sustainability within the next decade. Its
recycling concrete, but recycling hot-mix asphalt goal is to inform the reader of developing trends as
and unbound granular materials into a new con- well as foster innovation and encourage the adop-
crete pavement is also discussed. Specific guid- tion of technologies that will lead to more sustain-
ance on the appropriate use of recycled material as able concrete pavements.
aggregate in new concrete is provided, as is guid-
ance for its use in supporting layers. Emerging in Due to the dynamic nature of the topic, this manual
situ recycling techniques are discussed as a sustain- is a living document that will be revised regularly
able alternative. to reflect evolving understandings of issues related to
enhancing concrete pavement sustainability.
9. Concrete Pavements in the Urban Environment
This chapter discusses the unique characteristics of
concrete pavement that make it ideal for use in an 5. References
urban environment. Of specific interest is its high
American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). 2007. The
surface reflectivity index (SRI), which can help mit-
Vision for Civil Engineering in 2025. Based on The Sum-
igate the urban heat island effect and decrease the
mit on the Future of Civil Engineering2025 held
cost of artificial lighting. The urban environment is
June 2122, 2006. Reston, VA: American Society of
also a location where photocatalytic cements and
Civil Engineers.
coatings can be used to provide additional reflec-
tivity while treating nitrogen oxide (NOx), (SOx), ASCE. 2009A. 2009 Report Card for Americas Infra-
and volatile organic compounds. Concrete can structure. Reston, VA: American Society of Civil Engi-
also be colored and molded to create aesthetically neers. (
pleasing designs that not only are beautiful but files/RC2009_full_report.pdf, accessed Nov. 10, 2011)
also can be used to calm traffic in urban neighbor-
hoods, making them more pedestrian friendly. ASCE. 2009B. Board of Direction Views Sustainability
Alternatively, textured concrete surfaces can be Strategy as Key Priority. ASCE News 34:1.
designed to be exceptionally quiet for high-speed
Elkington, J. 1994. Towards the Sustainable Corpora-
operations. Addressing surface run-off is another
tion: Win-Win-Win Business Strategies for Sustainable
critical need in urban settings, making the use of
Development. California Management Review, 36:2.
pervious concrete an ideal choice for many paved
surfaces. McDonough, W., and M. Braungart. 2002. Cradle to
Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things. New York,
10. Assessment of Pavement Sustainability It is
NY: North Point Press.
essential that the sustainability of pavements be
systematically and accurately assessed to recognize Schley. 2008. The Necessary Revolution: How Individu-
improvement and guide innovation. This chapter als and Organizations Are Working Together to Create a
reviews current approaches to assessing pavement Sustainable World. New York, NY: Doubleday.
sustainability, including the Greenroads rating
system. It also describes the rigorous environmen- WCED (World Commission on the Environment and
tal life cycle assessment (LCA) approach as a path Development, United Nations). 1987. Our Common
to more fully quantify and optimize the environ- Future: The Report of the World Commission on Environ-
mental factors contributing to the sustainability of ment and Development. New York, NY: Oxford Univer-
concrete pavements. sity Press.

6 Ch. 1. INTRODUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Chapter 2
Tom Van Dam

This chapter focuses on the broad application of sus- systems. The chapter then discusses the life cycle of
tainability concepts as applied to the natural world, to concrete pavement and how the adoption of sustain-
pavement systems in general, and then specifically to able practices results in continued economic, environ-
concrete pavements. It begins with a brief introduction mental, and social health. The chapter concludes with
to a systems approach to understanding sustainabil- a discussion of innovation, describing how innova-
ity, introducing the concept of the life cycle, includ- tion is driven through the adoption of sustainability
ing cradle-to-grave and cradle-to-cradle closed loop principles.
1. A Systems Approach waste, it can compromise the ecological system and
Seeing the Big Picture its ability to produce regenerative resources that are
essential to the health of humanity as well as all life
This manual of practice is specifically written to on the planet. Not shown in Figure 2.1, but essential
address the needs of transportation and pavement to understanding sustainability, is how the current
professionals to facilitate the adoption of sustainable industrial system impacts social systems (e.g., commu-
concrete pavement practices. As such, the focus is very nities, families, culture).While improving the quality of
specific and the scope is necessarily narrow. Yet it is life in some aspects, the system also results in anxiety,
essential that concrete pavement professionals develop inequality, and stresses on societies that in the extreme
an appreciation of the role they play in creating a more are manifest as widespread poverty and war.
sustainable world by understanding the relationships
that exist between the industrial system on which As an alternative, Senge et al. (2008) offer the con-
the economy is built and the natural world, which cept of a regenerative circular economy illustrated in
includes social and ecological health. Figure 2.2. This economy reflects a movement towards
greater use of harvested regenerative resources and a
Until fairly recently, decision making was largely based dramatic reduction in accumulating waste, resulting in
on consideration of the bottom line, which was a more sustainable world in which resources are regen-
understood in purely economic terms. In The Neces- erated and waste minimized or eliminated. In this
sary Revolution, Senge et al. (2008) state that it is not model, there is still a need for extractive industries,
surprising that few people paid attention to degrad- but the greater dependency on renewable resources
ing social and environmental conditions under this ensures less system-wide impact due to extraction. It
model of industrial activity as it focuses on parts and also establishes a close link between economic growth
neglects the whole. As a result, achieving immediate and natural resource regeneration, which requires
tangible economic goals was rewarded while ignoring healthy ecological systems. Biodegradable waste from
long-term, larger system needs was largely without
consequence. This is evident upon examination of
production during the industrial age, in which narrow

thinking led to widespread dependency on non-regen- Clean Air



Drinkable Water

erative energy and material resources, inefficient and Fertile Soil


waste-generating production, and economic growth TO Pollination
PHO Stable Climate
driven through the consumption of products and
services. Growth

Figure 2.1 (Senge et al. 2008) illustrates this model Ecological

of production, showing how the current industrial
system (e.g., goods in production and use) is part of CONSUMPTION
a larger system that can broadly be considered as the PRODUCTS SERVICES
natural world. This natural world includes regenerative ves
resources (e.g., forest, croplands, and fisheries) and Natural Resources Goods in
Production Goods in
Production Use
non-regenerative resources (e.g., oil, minerals). Regen- ting
erative resources are part of the ecological system, and Waste from
Waste from Use
as long as such a resource is replenished more quickly Non-
Extracting and Waste from
Regenerative Discard
than it is consumed, the resource is sustained indefi- resources Manufacturing
nitely. On the other hand, non-regenerative resources
are extracted from the earth, and since they are not
regenerated within a useful timeframe, they may in Accumulating Waste

time become depleted. Significantly, the extraction and

harvesting of resources and the production and use of Figure 2.1 Illustration of the current industrial system
goods generate waste. Depending on the nature of this (Senge et al. 2008)

8 Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY CONCEPTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

industrial processes are fed into the ecological system and construction) through its service life and finally
to support resource development. Wastes not used to to the grave (pavement removal and reconstruction).
support natural systems are used as raw materials for This cradle-to-grave concept is counter to sustainabil-
other industrial processes, thus resulting in waste min- ity. Sustainability instead requires a cradle-to-cradle
imization while at the same time reducing demands approach in which the end of life is part of a new
to extract or harvest additional resources. Ideally, the beginning (McDonough and Braungart 2002). For
economic system will ultimately mimic that which concrete pavements, this is simply illustrated in Figure
happens in nature, in which the concept of waste is 2.3, in which design, materials processing, construc-
eliminated and all waste becomes food for another tion, operations, preservation and rehabilitation, and
process (McDonough and Braungart 2002). reconstruction and recycling are joined in a continu-
ous loop.
Inherent in this concept is the understanding that
sustainability requires a life-cycle perspective, in which Although conceptually this may seem overwhelm-
the economic, environmental, and social benefits and ing, applying sustainability principles at a practical,
costs of any product or service are considered over its implementable level using todays technologies simply
entire life. This is partially illustrated in Figure 2.2, means finding opportunities to minimize environ-
which shows material extraction, manufacturing, and mental impact while increasing economic and social
goods in use, with a circular flow of natural and tech- benefit. Already, the value of life-cycle cost analysis
nical materials back into regeneration and production. (LCCA) is recognized as a way to consider current and
future anticipated economic impacts over the life of
What is lacking in this illustration is the temporal the design. In addition, as is discussed in Chapter 10,
nature of the life cycle, which in the case of a pave- a number of approaches to assess sustainability are
ment may be 40 or more years. Conventionally, we emerging and will soon be available for implementa-
think of pavement life as linear, moving from the tion by the concrete pavement industry, including the
cradle (design, material extraction and processing, use of life-cycle analyses that address environmental
impacts over the life of a pavement. Yet, only by step-
ping away from the larger issues of the economy as a

Clean Air whole and instead focusing on the project level can


Health vs. Stress


Drinkable Water these overarching sustainability concepts be imple-

Fertile Soil Security vs. Fear

SY Social Harmony vs. Mistrust

TO Pollination mented into actionable and measurable activities that
PHO Stable Climate Peace vs. Unresolvable Conflicts
will be used by the concrete pavement industry.
Growth Growth

Ecological Social
Systems Systems
Regeneration Regeneration


ves Reconstruction
tin Processing and Recycling
Natural Resources Goods in Goods in
Production Production
x trac
Waste from
Waste from Use
Non- Waste from
Regenerative Extracting and
Manufacturing Discard Construction Preservation and

Accumulating Waste Operations

Figure 2.2 Illustration of the regenerative circular Figure 2.3 The concrete pavement life cycle (Van
economy (Senge et al. 2008) Dam and Taylor 2009).

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY CONCEPTS 9

To do so, it is first necessary to recognize that a con- enhance the sustainability of the project-level system,
crete pavement can be considered as a project-level as well as positively impacting the system as a whole.
system within the larger system previously discussed. Without a guided and committed approach to imple-
This project-level system has its own context, which mentation, the adoption of sustainable practices by the
is sensitive to the needs defined by the various stake- concrete pavement industry will languish. To move
holders and the environmental setting in which the sustainability from a philosophical concept to imple-
project is to be constructed. The context establishes mentable practices will require the adoption of the
the constraints under which project decisions are following two additional components of sustainability
made, from which the following two additional sus- (Muench et al. 2011):
tainability components are identified (Muench et al.
2011): Experience Experience represents both what has
been learned and the ongoing learning process,
Extent Extent represents the spatial and temporal including technical expertise, innovation, and
constraints and limits of the project-level system, knowledge of applicable historical information.
including such items as project length, right-of-way,
service life, height restrictions, construction work- Exposure Exposure represents ongoing educa-
ing hours, and so on. These constraints establish tional and awareness programs for all stakeholders,
the boundaries within which sustainability of the including the general public, agencies, engineering
project can be assessed. professionals, and contractors.

Expectations Expectations are the key human The purpose of this manual of practice is to help meet
value constraints, which include both the economic the objectives of these two sustainability components,
and social context, used to judge the overall per- conveying industry experience and exposing stake-
formance of the system. They may include perfor- holders in the concrete pavement industry to the
mance of individual design elements, the quality of concepts and implementation of sustainable practices.
some aspect of the overall project, or how an out- The next section of this chapter will introduce some
come beyond the project-level system is addressed. of the specific sustainable features of concrete pave-
ments, linking these features to the various phases
Already, there has been modest movement within illustrated in Figure 2.3. Subsequent chapters expand
the concrete paving industry to adopt practices that on each phase, providing actionable items that can be
support sustainability at the project level that have implemented today and that will directly enhance the
broader system-wide sustainability impacts. For project-level sustainability of concrete pavements.
example, a common technical nutrient used in con-
crete production is slag cement, which is a byproduct
of another industry and improves the long-term prop- 2. Concrete Pavements
erties of concrete (meeting project-level constraints) Many features of concrete pavements should be
while reducing system-wide environmental impacts assessed when considering them from a sustainabil-
(e.g., lowering the energy use and emissions of the ity perspective. Further, innovative features continue
constructed pavement). Other recycled and industrial to emerge that result in additional enhancement to
byproduct materials (RIBMs) that are used in concrete the sustainability of concrete pavements. Figure 2.4
include fly ash, recycled concrete aggregate (RCA), illustrates a few of these features, each of which is
and air-cooled blast furnace slag, to name a few, all of described in detail in subsequent chapters of this
which are addressed in later chapters in this manual of manual of practice. The purpose of this section is to
practice. describe the relationship between these features and
However, sustainability is much broader than the the life-cycle phases illustrated in Figure 2.3, as well
application of a number of individual activities (such as among the features themselves. The complex nature
as RIBM use). Focusing narrowly on individual activi- of these relationships demonstrates the need for the
ties will result in minor improvements but will miss application of a holistic systematic approach when
out on the much greater opportunity to significantly considering the sustainability of concrete pavement.

10 Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY CONCEPTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Design Phase directly impact the use phase, particularly in an urban
It is fitting that the design phase is the first to be environment where quiet and cool pavement surfaces
discussed, as it is only through thoughtful and deliber- have positive social impacts and increased storm water
ate design that sustainability can be achieved. Design infiltration has broad economic, environmental, and
of concrete pavements has traditionally focused on social benefits. Long-life pavements directly impact
slab thickness design, although other design details, preservation, rehabilitation, and reconstruction, delay-
including joint spacing and load transfer, slab support ing the timing of future activities and reducing future
considerations, drainage, and edge support to name agency and user costs, thus directly affecting life-cycle
a few, have long been recognized as being of equal or economic impacts while reducing future traffic delays
greater importance (Smith and Hall 2001). and associated environmental and social impacts. It
is also clear that design objectives cannot be achieved
These design details are directly considered in the if not integrated with the materials processing and
new AASHTO DARWin-ME Mechanistic-Empirical construction phases, thus necessitating collaboration
Design Guide (MEPDG), which provides a rigorous between the various specialties represented in typical
approach to considering the effect of multiple design transportation agencies.
variables to assist in optimizing the design for given
conditions. Use of the MEPDG approach is growing The design phase is also where innovative pavement
and will likely become the norm over time. Authorities design types, such as two-lift concrete pavement,
are developing local calibration data for the system or roller-compacted concrete (RCC), precast concrete and
using a locally modified version. concrete pavers, and thin concrete pavement (TCP)
will be considered. The design phase is discussed in
In addition to these traditional design considerations, detail in Chapter 3 of the manual of practice.
elements illustrated in Figure 2.4, including surface
texture, light color, long life, and improved storm
water quality can also be considered during the design
process. It is easy to see how these elements, although Material processing is a broad topic that includes
selected at the design phase, interact directly with material acquisition, material processing, and concrete
other phases of the life cycle. For example, quiet mixture design and proportioning. Current material
surface texturing, light pavement coloration, and acquisition is largely based on extractive industries,
improved storm water quality (e.g., pervious concrete) such as mining aggregate or raw materials for cement

Figure 2.4 Features of concrete pavements that can enhance sustainability (from Wathne 2008)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY CONCEPTS 11

production. But some material acquisition is from concrete, low-emission equipment, in-place recycling,
renewable resources (mainly for chemical admixtures), and local material utilization.
and others are byproducts from other industries (e.g.,
RCA or supplementary cementitious materials such as
fly ash and slag cement). Material processing entails
taking the raw materials and making finished materi- The operational or use phase of a concrete pavement
als including cement, crushed and blended aggregates, is rarely considered at the project level unless capac-
admixtures, and so on. Material processing can often ity and congestion are being considered as part of a
be more energy intensive than construction activities, transportation planning study. Yet, up to 85 percent
meaning that small benefits in processing will lead of greenhouse gas emissions associated with the
to substantial savings in the whole life cycle. Mixture expected service life of a pavement can be incurred
design and proportioning is the creation of material during this phase (Ochsendorf 2010). This is most
blends that meet the engineering requirements and are significant on high-volume roads, where emissions
subsequently placed during the construction phase. generated by vehicles are a dominant factor. To some
degree, it has been found that the rolling resistance of
Materials have a major impact on all other life cycle vehicles moving on a rigid surface is less than that of
phases, as they often provide project-level constraints those moving on a flexible surface, but research is still
during the design phase and strongly influence the underway to determine the significance of this differ-
construction, preservation/rehabilitation, and recon- ence and its impact on fuel efficiency and emissions.
struction/recycling phases, and even impact the opera- What is known to be significant is that fuel efficiency
tional phase. Regarding sustainable features illustrated is improved on smooth roads, emphasizing the impor-
in Figure 2-4, material processing factors most directly tance of constructing smooth pavements and then
influence decisions impacting the use of industrial using preservation strategies that reduce roughness
byproducts, reduced energy footprint, light color, and (e.g., diamond grinding). These topics are discussed in
long-life. Chapter 6.
This phase is discussed in detail in Chapter 4 with Sustainability attributes of the use phase that are
additional discussion on recycled concrete in Chapter 8. enhanced by the use of light-colored concrete surfaces
include improved night-time safety, reduced need for
Construction artificial lighting, and reduced urban heat island effect.
Improved storm-water quality and quiet surfaces are
The construction phase includes typical concrete plant also benefits realized in the use phase in urban envi-
batching and mixing operations, transportation of ronments. The urban environment also provides an
materials from stockpiles and the concrete plant, pav- opportunity to use photocatalytic materials integrated
ing operations, and post-paving activities. This phase into the cement or applied as a coating to treat certain
can have a large impact on the sustainability of the harmful emissions. Such urban opportunities are dis-
concrete pavement over the life cycle because, even if cussed in Chapter 9.
the best design and materials are used, poor construc-
tion makes it unlikely that the concrete pavement will
achieve its design objectives or expected service life. Preservation and Rehabilitation
With respect to Figure 2.4, the construction phase Concrete pavement preservation is a strategy for keep-
directly impacts long life, the creation of a quiet ing good pavements in good condition. It is not only
surface texture, and low fuel consumption during economically cost effective but also has significant
construction. environmental and social benefits. For one, preserva-
Concrete pavement construction is discussed in tion strategies use limited amounts of new materials,
Chapter 5, which briefly describes specific activities reducing the environmental burden of material extrac-
that support enhanced sustainability, including low tion and processing. Further, preservation techniques
energy plant operations, recycling water and returned entail minimal traffic disruption, reducing emissions

12 Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY CONCEPTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

and social impacts. And the use of diamond grind- economic bottom line. As this approach gives way to
ing as a preservation strategy not only restores texture longer-term thinking that considers all three facets
to enhance safety, the resulting pavement surface is of sustainability, innovative solutions will emerge.
quiet and smooth, reducing the impact of noise while Implementing new, sustainable solutions can allow
increasing fuel efficiency. the industry to move dynamically forward, realizing
multiple opportunities and expanding markets. In
Preservation is no longer appropriate when the struc- contrast, if the industry (represented by all stakehold-
tural capacity of the pavement needs to be improved. ers, whether owner or client) balks and is unable to
At this point, a number of rehabilitation alternatives move beyond entrenched ideas and technologies, it
can be effectively utilized, including the use of con- will be limited in its ability to recognize the opportuni-
crete overlays. The appropriate and timely use of over- ties that exist.
lays will take advantage of the remaining pavement
structural capacity, extending the pavement service Already, a number of technologies are being adopted in
life in a cost-effective and environmentally beneficial response to implementing sustainability principles. As
manner. discussed in Chapter 4, the most obvious are changes
in cementitious materials and mixture proportioning
Concrete pavement renewal, which incorporates both that have significantly reduced the amount of portland
preservation and rehabilitation, is discussed in cement contained within a cubic yard of concrete.
Chapter 7. This has led to a significant reduction in the carbon
footprint of paving concrete, with no anticipated
Reconstruction and Recycling decrease in expected performance (many expect better
performance) and no increase in cost. Other innova-
The final stage of a concrete pavements life cycle tions, including the use of in-situ concrete recycling,
is reconstruction and recycling. In-situ recycling of recycling water at the concrete plant, pervious con-
concrete pavement, generally as a new subbase or base crete, and next-generation quiet texturing, are already
layer is a viable alternative, with the economic and becoming mainstream in some markets. Emerging
environmental advantages of minimal material trans- technologies including the use of photocatalytic
portation. The use of screened RCA as a new base or cements and the inclusion of RAP in concrete mixtures
concrete is also a possibility. One benefit of crushing are undergoing field trials in demonstration projects.
concrete and exposing it to the atmosphere is that it And, as described in Chapter 10, tools to rate the
will sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide through sustainability of concrete pavements are also emerg-
carbonation, an added benefit of recycling. Discus- ing and will soon become integrated into common
sion of these topics, along with the incorporation of practice.
other recycled paving materials, including recycled
asphalt pavement (RAP), in new concrete pavement is Further advances are just over the horizon, whether
provided in Chapter 8, which focuses on completely low-carbon to carbon-sequestering cements, innova-
recycling the existing structure back into a newly tive designs or materials that result in a significant
reconstructed pavement. reduction in pavement thickness, new bio-derived
admixtures that enhance the durability of concrete,
equipment that rapidly and efficiently recycles con-
3. Importance of Innovation crete in-situ, next generation inexpensive and highly
One of the greatest advantages of adopting sustain- efficient photocatalytic materials, or even pavements
able concrete pavement practices is in the discovery of that generate electricity to power adjacent neighbor-
things that are yet unknown. Considering economic, hoods. Although the exact nature of these innovations
environmental, and social factors over the entire pave- is speculative at this point, as is discussed in Chapter
ment life cycle will require a different way of thinking 11, it is a certainty that innovations are underway that
about the concrete pavement industry. Current think- will change the nature of the concrete pavement indus-
ing is driven by the need to meet only the short-term try and that the adoption of these innovations will be
driven by sustainability principles.

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY CONCEPTS 13

4. References Smith, K.D., and K.T. Hall. 2001. Concrete Pavement
Design Details and Construction PracticesState of the Art
McDonough, W., and M. Braungart. 2002. Cradle to
Technical Digest. NHI Course No. 131060. Washington,
Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things. New York,
D.C.: National Highway Institute, U.S. Department of
NY: North Point Press.
Muench, S.T., J.L. Anderson, J.P. Hartfield, J.R. Koes-
Van Dam, T., and P. Taylor. 2009. Building Sustainable
ter, M. Sderlund, et al. 2011. Greenroads Manual
Pavements with Concrete. Ames, IA: National Concrete
v1.5. (J.L. Anderson, C.D. Weiland, and S.T. Muench,
Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University.
Eds.). Seattle, WA: University of Washington. (www.
(; accesses Dec. 5, 2011)
ing.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
Ochsendorf, J. 2010. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of
Wathne, L. 2008. Green HighwaysSustainability
Highway Pavements. Interim Report. Cambridge, MA:
Benefits of Concrete Pavement. Presentation made
Concrete Sustainability Hub, Massachusetts Institute of
at the 45th Annual Concrete Paving Workshop of the
Iowa Chapter of the American Concrete Paving Asso-
Senge, P., B. Smith, N. Kruschwitz, J. Laur, and S. ciation, Des Moines, IA.
Schley. 2008. The Necessary Revolution: How Individuals
are Working Together to Create a Sustainable World. New
York, NY: Doubleday Publishing Group, New York.

14 Ch. 2. PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY CONCEPTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Chapter 3
Tom Van Dam

Sustainability is not an accident. Pavement design waste inherent in both under-design and over-design.
plays a strong role in ensuring that the constructed Specific concrete pavement design attributes that
concrete pavement begins its life as a cradle-to-cradle enhance sustainability are then presented. Many of
sustainable project. This chapter considers how con- these involve improving the interaction between the
crete pavement design plays a strong role in enhancing pavement surface and the environment, whether using
the sustainability of concrete pavements. The chapter specific textures that are quieter, lighter colors that
begins by introducing the concept of context sensi- are cooler, patterns that are aesthetically pleasing and
tive design, which requires the designer to recognize safer, photocatalytics that have the ability to treat air
that a single approach to design does not meet all pollution, or pervious surfaces that have the ability to
needs, that input must be sought from the various improve storm water quality. The chapter concludes
stakeholders, including those representing the natural with brief introductions to four innovative pavement
world, and that the design must be tailored to meet designs (two-lift, precast panels and pavers, roller-
the unique needs of every project. The state of the compacted concrete, and thin concrete pavements)
practice in pavement design is then briefly introduced, that offer opportunities for the designer to further
including designing for what is needed and avoiding enhance the sustainability of concrete pavements.
1. Context-Sensitive Design tire-pavement generated noise may be far less an issue
than aesthetics, high reflectivity, or surface drainage.
Sustainability requires a thoughtful approach to con-
It is even possible that an urban neighborhood might
crete pavement design. The designer must account for
desire that roughness be designed into the surface to
human needs and values defined by the management
produce a calming effect on vehicles exceeding the
team and various stakeholders while considering the
speed limit, creating a safer and more livable com-
environmental setting in which the pavement will be
munity for the residents. More information on urban
constructed (Muench et al. 2011). This approach is
environments is given in Chapter 9.
often referred to as context-sensitive design (CSD),
which entails meeting the needs of not only the user Along the same lines, the needs in a rural environment
but also the adjacent communities and the environ- will differ from those of urban communities. Often,
ment. The key to successfully employing this principle the health of the natural community, which includes
is recognizing that a single approach to design does flora and fauna and the quality of air and water, will
not meet all needs. become increasingly important in rural settings. This
is why the designer must be sensitive to the context in
For example, the past practice of transversely tin-
which the pavement is being designed.
ing concrete pavements to create surface texture that
increased skid resistance and enhanced safety has been Successfully implementing CSD requires early involve-
demonstrated to have a significant impact on noise ment of everyone who is affected, including those rep-
generation through tire-pavement interaction (Rasmus- resenting community interests and ecological systems,
sen et al. 2007). The noise issue was raised by com- through a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach.
munities adjacent to roadways, and, in some cases, Public involvement must be early and continuous.
concrete pavements were overlaid solely to reduce the Although this takes time and effort, it will result in
noise generated. Because of feedback from local com- increased societal acceptance and reduced ecologi-
munities, research was conducted to identify factors cal impact, improving project efficiency by reducing
contributing to the objectionable noise and mitiga- expensive and time-consuming reworking of the proj-
tion strategies have been developed that have resulted ect at a later date.
in safe and quiet concrete riding surfaces; see Figure
3.1(Rasmussen et al. 2008). In the end, designing to serve the community will
result in the construction of concrete pavement
It is recognized that the same communities that object projects that reflect a sense of the place where they
to noise generated on a high-speed roadway may are built and that meld physically and visually within
have a different set of criteria for local, slow-speed the surrounding environment and community. More
roads serving their neighborhoods. In such locations, detailed information on CSD can be found at

Figure 3.1 RoboTex scans of 100200 mm samples showing variability of transverse tined surface and its
effect on noise level (adapted from Rasmussen et al. 2008)

16 Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Specific activities just slab thickness. Common design features of long-
that can be immediately adopted to advance CSD for life concrete pavements include the following (Tayabji
concrete pavement design include the following: and Lim 2007):

Involve key stakeholders At the earliest stages of Adequate structural slab thickness Some designs
design, involve key stakeholders in the process include additional thickness as a sacrificial layer
to create a concrete pavement system that will that will be removed during future diamond
enhance the livability of the community. Stake- grinding.
holders include agency personnel and interested
organizations and community members, plus the Strong, erosion-resistant bases Many states use
designer, materials suppliers, and contractor (if either asphalt- or cement-stabilized bases.
possible). The Missouri Department of Transpor- Doweled transverse joints or continuously reinforced
tations (MoDOT) recently constructed US 141 concrete pavement When jointed plain concrete
green project in St. Louis, Missouri, illustrates pavement design is used, the joint spacing is
the power of stakeholder participation, involving relatively short, the joints are doweled, and often
the contractor and community representatives in a highly corrosion-resistant dowels are used.
CSD process in designing a new route that passed
through a popular wooded area. By working with As discussed by Van Dam and Taylor (2009), a funda-
the contractor and community, the designer was mental principle in sustainable design is to design for
able to incorporate multiple sustainable elements what you need. This means that the designer should
into the design, allowing MoDOT to develop a thoroughly understand the principles of pavement
showcase project with strong community backing design, accurately collect the required data, and use
(Jonas 2011). the most advanced design tools available to ensure
that project needs are met within the given economic,
Take advantage of concretes versatility Look for environmental, and social constraints. Overdesign
opportunities to take advantage of concretes ver- in which the concrete slab is designed significantly
satility for creating highly functional, economical thicker than requiredis wasteful, unjustifiably
pavements that also meet environmental and social increasing the economic and environmental burden of
needs. Communities may be interested in concretes the project. But under-design can be even more waste-
ability to incorporate color and texture into aesthet- ful, as it will often result in unacceptable performance,
ically pleasing patterns, enhance surface drainage, premature failure, and the need to apply maintenance
demarcate pedestrian crossings, and provide highly and rehabilitation at an earlier than anticipated age at
reflective surfaces. great economic, environmental, and social cost.
The AASHTO DARWin-ME mechanistic-empirical
2. Concrete Pavement Design: pavement design (MEPDG) approach more thoroughly
The State of the Practice considers the contribution of material properties, sup-
port conditions, climate, and traffic, as well as slab
The state of the practice in concrete pavement design
geometry, edge support, and joint load transfer than
produces long-life pavements that withstand heavy
do empirically-based methods, thus resulting in more
traffic and severe environmental loadings for decades
accurate designs. Further, a mechanistic approach,
with little need for maintenance or rehabilitation
which is based on scientific principles, also accommo-
(Tayabji and Lim 2007, Hall et al. 2007). This ability
dates innovation much more readily than an empirical
to confidently design pavements that will perform as
approach, which relies on observation, experience,
desired for 40 or more years is one of the most sustain-
or experiment, thus allowing the designer an avenue
able inherent features of concrete pavements. Because
to evaluate nontraditional approaches to design and
longevity is so important, it must be recognized that
materials selection and proportioning.
long concrete pavement life is about a lot more than

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS 17
As briefly discussed in Chapter 2, pavement design the emerging innovative design technologies discussed
must be approached holistically, with all design ele- next to great advantage.
ments considered together. In addition to the slab
thickness, other important design elements that must
be considered include material properties, joint spac- 4. Alternative and Emerging
ing, load transfer, drainage, supporting layers, and Design Technologies
surface texture (Smith and Hall 2001, Taylor et al. Traditionally, concrete pavement design has focused on
2006). determining the thickness of a concrete slab, placed as
a single lift with one pass of a paver. Recently, a num-
ber of alternative paving technologies have emerged
3. Design Attributes Directly
that are challenging this traditional way of construct-
Enhancing Sustainability ing concrete pavements, offering some unique design
Depending on context, design attributes specifically opportunities including the following:
focused on enhancing sustainability should be con-
sidered. These include such surface features as being Two-lift concrete pavement design Two-lift pave-
aesthetically pleasing, safe and quiet, reflective, and ments are constructed in two lifts, wet on wet,
photocatalytic. using two slipform pavers one immediately follow-
ing the other. The concrete mixture in the bottom
As these design attributes are primarily applicable in lift is often different from the mixture in the top lift.
an urban environment (which is discussed in detail in
Chapter 9), they will only be briefly addressed here. Precast concrete pavement systems Fabricated off
But the essential recognition from a design perspec- site in precast plants, this type of pavement can
tive is how each of these features directly influences offer a number of sustainability enhancements.
the way the pavement interacts with the surround- Interlocking concrete pavers Also fabricated off site
ing community and/or ecological system, whether in a precast plant, pavers provide an aesthetically
through a reduction in noise, a safer riding surface, pleasing surface that can also be pervious, highly
improved aesthetics in the community, reduction in reflective, or even incorporating photocatalytics for
air pollution, reduction of the heat island effect, and/ use in streets and local roads.
or reduction of run-off while improving storm water
quality. In fact, many of these features address mul- Roller-compacted concrete (RCC) pavements RCC
tiple needs. For example, photocatalytic materials not pavement designs use stiff concrete mixtures placed
only help breakdown nitrous and sulfur oxides (NOx and densified using equipment typical of hot-mix
and SOx), they also are light colored, addressing the asphalt (HMA) construction. Traditionally used in
urban heat island effect and perhaps improving storm hydraulic structures, pavement in industrial facili-
water quality as well (see Chapter 11). ties, and cargo handling areas, it is starting to be
used in streets and local roads.
The new generation of quiet surface textures are also
skid resistant, improving safety. Pervious concrete not Thin concrete pavement (TCP) design Based on a
only improves storm water quality, it also is known to patented Chilean design, TCP is characterized by
reduce the heat island effect and, if used as a riding relatively thin slabs with short joint spacing.
surface, is known to be quiet. The use of concrete
Pervious pavements Pervious pavements allow
pavements in heavy traffic locations such as bus
rainwater to percolate and replenish groundwater
lanes and loading docks can be an effective means of
rather than requiring rainwater to be handled by a
reducing pavement distress and the resulting effects
storm water or effluent system.
of closures for repairs. Thus, an informed designer
can package various pavement surface attributes to The following sections briefly discuss each of these
address multiple sustainability goals. Further, these innovations and how they can be used in the design of
attributes can be used in combination with some of sustainable concrete pavements.

18 Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Two-Lift Concrete Pavement environmental footprint of the pavement due to the
Two-lift concrete paving is not new. In fact, the oldest thinness of the layer. This ensures good long-term
concrete pavements in the United States, constructed durability and a safe riding surface, especially if the
by the R.S. Blome Granitoid Co., were placed as two- thickness of the top lift is designed for multiple dia-
lifts, wet-on-wet, with the top lift being a different mond grindings over its life. In the case of the Kan-
concrete than the bottom lift. Two-lift construction sas demonstration project, the use of an exposed
was also used to facilitate the placement of reinforc- aggregate surface was investigated to reduce noise
ing mesh in jointed reinforced concrete; the mesh generated from tire-pavement interaction (Shields
was set upon the surface of the bottom lift and encap- and Taylor 2009). The Missouri project is experi-
sulated by the top lift. Recently, after examining the menting with the use of photocatalytic cement in
excellent performance of two-lift concrete pavements the top-lift (
in Europe, there has been a resurgence of interest in EnvironmentalIssues-Stone.pdf) to treat air pollu-
adopting modern two-lift concrete pavement design in tion. Photocatalytic materials are expensive, and
the United States, as shown by recent demonstration thus using them only in the top lift makes sense to
projects constructed in Kansas and Missouri (see www. reduce costs without impacting performance. Experience with two-lift paving in the United States
This pavement system typically consist of a thick is limited but increasing. Eleven two-lift projects were
bottom lift (typically 80 percent or more of the total constructed from 1970 to 1994 (Florida, Iowa, Kansas,
thickness) and a thin (20 percent or less of the total Michigan, and North Dakota) (Harrington et al. 2010)
thickness) top lift that is optimized for carrying traffic. all are still in service. In 2008, the Kansas DOT con-
Many European countries utilize an exposed aggregate structed over five miles of two-lift pavement on I-70
surface texture in conjunction with the two-lift con- west of Abilene (Figure 3.2).
struction process. The versatility inherent in the two-lift design provides
The potential sustainability advantages of two-lift the designer with multiple options to cost effectively
pavement include the following: integrate one or more sustainable attributes into the
new pavement, resulting in economic savings while
Bottom lift The concrete mix proportions for the improving environmental and social performance. It is
bottom lift can be optimized knowing it will be expected that this versatility will result in the wide-
protected from the elements during construction spread adoption of this technology in the future.
(as it will be capped with the top lift) and will not
be subjected directly to traffic. This means that it
can use a higher supplementary cementitious mate-
rial (SCM) content, higher percentage of recycled
aggregate including recycled asphalt pavement
(RAP), and aggregates with less stringent require-
ments (e.g., wear resistance) than normal because
the bottom lift will not be exposed to traffic. A
broader range of locally available aggregates and
higher amounts of recycled and industrial byprod-
uct materials (RIBMs) can be used, and so reduce
the environmental footprint of the concrete.

Top lift The relatively thin top lift is optimized

to carry traffic. It often uses wear-resistant aggre-
gate that may have to be transported longer dis-
tances and a higher portland cement content, Figure 3.2 Two-lift pavement being constructed in
but can do so without significantly impacting the Kansas

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS 19
Precast Concrete Pavement Systems in length, and similar to a conventionally designed
Precast concrete pavement systems have a long his- concrete pavement in thickness. Although there are
tory, but with recent innovations they will continue to multiple variations of this type of system, in one of
grow in popularity. Precast concrete pavement systems the most common systems the panels are placed on
typically consist of individual panels that are one to a meticulously prepared surface with bedding grout
two lanes in width and 10 to 15 ft in length, depend- used to ensure uniform slab support. Load transfer
ing on the system. The pavement panels are produced devices, embedded using non-shrink, high-strength
in a precast plant, where the material is proportioned, grout inserted after placement, are used to establish
molded, consolidated, and cured under controlled composite slab action across joints (Fort Miller Co.
conditions, then shipped to the site where they are 2011).
assembled on grade. Precast prestressed concrete pavement system (PPCPS)
Fabrication under controlled conditions eliminates These systems typically consist of rectangular
a major construction variableunfavorable ambi- precast slabs that are up to two lanes (38 ft) in
ent weather conditionswhich can play havoc on width, 10 ft in length, and thinner than conven-
conventionally cast-in-place concrete pavements, and tionally designed concrete pavements, with a
it also reduces material and construction variability. thickness of 7 to 8 in. for highway applications.
Further, precast concrete pavement systems allow the They are prestressed in the transverse direction
cost-effective implementation of certain sustainabil- during fabrication and placed in 150- to 250-ft long
ity features, including enhanced aesthetics, specialty pavement segments that are post-tensioned longi-
surface textures, high surface reflectivity, and photo- tudinally during construction. Plastic sheeting is
catalytic materials. Many of these features are made used to separate the panels from the base, allowing
possible because the pavement wearing surface can movement of the panels during the post-tensioning
be cast against a mold in two (or more) lifts if desired, operation. The use of prestressing/post tensioning
giving a degree of control that is not possible with cast- increases load capacity, maximizing pavement life
in-place pavements. Casting the surface against a mold (Merritt and Tayabji 2009).
also results is a denser surface, as the lighter concrete Regardless of the system employed, precast pavements
mixture constituents (air and water) rise towards what have some unique features that can enhance sustain-
will be the underside of the pavement and the dense ability. First, when used either as a full-depth repair or
cement and aggregate settle to form a dense molded as an entire pavement system, a well executed pre-
surface. cast pavement installation can be done with minimal
Initial work in this area focused on the use of precast disruption to traffic because there is no need to wait
panels to rapidly install full-depth repairs in jointed
concrete pavements (Tayabji and Hall 2008). This
repair method continues to be used in a number of
states, where full-lane width panels are cast in two to
three standard lengths, stockpiled, and then rapidly
inserted into a gap cut to the specified size in the dam-
aged pavement; see Figure 3.3.

Current emphasis is on the implementation of precast

panels to create entire pavement systems. The follow-
ing two basic approaches are currently used in the
United States (FHWA 2011):

Jointed precast concrete pavement system (JPCPS)

These systems typically consist of rectangular pre- Figure 3.3 Precast pavement being installed
cast panels that are one lane in width, 10 to 15 ft (photo courtesy of Shiraz Tayabji, FHWA)

20 Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
for the concrete to gain adequate strength prior to Roller-Compacted Concrete Pavement
opening to traffic. This is most significant for repairs in Roller-compacted concrete (RCC) pavement has been
urban areas but is also true for full-lane replacements used in the construction of various types of civil infra-
if staged correctly. Minimizing traffic disruption has structure, including dams, other hydraulic structures,
many positive effects, including reduced user costs cargo handling facilities, and pavements. Although
incurred due to delay and corresponding increased the constituents in RCC are similar to conventional
fuel consumption, reduced environmental damage concrete, they differ in proportioning, with RCC typi-
from increased emission associated with vehicles cally having less cementitious material and an aggre-
slowed by congestion, and reduced social impacts to gate gradation similar to that used in hot-mix asphalt
surrounding communities from noise and gridlock. (HMA) mixtures. In a fresh state, RCC is very stiff and
Second, precast systems are anticipated to have long is thus placed using construction methods similar to
lives that are relatively maintenance free. The sustain- those used for HMA construction, using an HMA-type
ability advantages of long-life pavements have already paver and compacted by heavy vibratory steel drum
been discussed in Chapter 2, but in summary they and rubber-tired rollers (Figure 3.4). Ultimate load-
include the following: carrying capacity is obtained through a combination
of internal, aggregate-to-aggregate friction and the
Reduced life-cycle economic cost. cohesion obtained through hydration of the binder.
The final surface is adequate for pavements carrying
Reduced life-cycle environmental impact due to less traffic at low and moderate speeds but often is either
need for extracted materials and for future rehabili- diamond ground or overlaid to meet the smoothness
tation and reconstruction. demands of high-speed traffic. An excellent guide on
Reduced traffic delay and congestion during con- RCC pavements has been written by Harrington et al.
struction and over the life cycle. (2010), and additional information is provided by the
Portland Cement Association (PCA 2011).
The advantages of using two or more lifts and casting
the pavement surface against a mold can be capital- RCC shares many sustainability attributes with con-
ized on in precast pavement systems, optimizing the ventional concrete pavements, including low life-
surface for the given application. For a pavement car- cycle economic costs, the ability to incorporate a
rying high-speed traffic, the surface can be designed to high amount of RIBMs into the mix, and high surface
be exceptionally quiet while providing good frictional reflectivity. Some of the specific advantages of RCC
from a sustainability perspective include low initial
characteristics to enhance safety. For slower speed
cost and rapid construction compared to both conven-
pavements designed for the urban environment, the
tionally designed concrete pavements and multi-lift
surface can be designed to be aesthetically pleasing,
HMA pavements of similar structural capacity. In addi-
cool, photocatalytic, and drainable and even to pro-
tion, if the lower cementitious content translates into a
vide a traffic calming effect by inducing nuisance
lower portland cement content, the carbon footprint is
vibration in vehicles operating too quickly. Further,
precast pavement systems for the urban environment
can be designed to snap in and snap out, meaning
that the precast panel over a needed utility repair is
simply detached and removed, the repair to the utility
completed, and the panel reattached. This eliminates
waste, expedites the repair process, and maintains the
integrity of the pavement system. It is easy to envision
the ability to design a major urban project, such as an
intersection replacement, using a precast pavement
system in which all the design, fabrication, and staging
are done ahead of time and the work is completed over Figure 3.4 RCC pavement being placed (photo
a few evenings or a weekend. courtesy of PCA)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS 21
reduced. Load transfer across joints may be lower than while effectively managing surface run-off. Vehicular
conventional concrete because dowels are not used. interlocking concrete pavers, such as those shown
in Figure 3.6, can carry mainline traffic. They are
As another arrow in the quiver for designers of sustain- particularly applicable in urban areas where both
able concrete pavements, the use of RCC as a paving their attractive appearance and versatility to permit
material will likely continue to grow. maintenance of underground utilities can be used to
good advantage.
Interlocking Concrete Pavers Recent innovations have led to the installation of
Similar to precast concrete pavement systems, inter- interlocking concrete pavers in Chicago that have a
locking concrete pavers are also produced in a plant, thin photocatalytic surfacing. The high reflectivity of
where the material is proportioned, pressed, and cured these pavers will help mitigate the urban heat island
under controlled conditions, then shipped to the site effect. The photocatalytic surface will help keep the
where they are assembled on grade. Again, fabrication surface bright white while also treating nitrous and
under controlled conditions eliminates a major con- sulfur oxides. Automated methods have been devel-
structionunfavorable ambient weather conditions oped in Europe that expedite the placement of inter-
which can play havoc on conventionally cast-in-place locking concrete pavers, significantly accelerating the
concrete pavements, and it also reduces material and construction process. Additional information regarding
construction variability.. interlocking pavers, including using them to support
sustainable design, can be found at the website of the
Pavers are the original pavement surfacing material,
Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute (
with the use of stone pavers dating back to antiquity.
Modern interlocking concrete pavers have evolved
to be extremely versatile and durable and are used in Thin Concrete Pavement Design
projects as varied as low-volume parking areas to the Most of the design technologies discussed so far (e.g.,
most heavily loaded cargo handling facilities. Figure two-lift, precast, pavers, and RCC) have been around
3.5 shows an example of permeable interlocking for decades and are experiencing something like a
concrete pavers, which not only possess the necessary revival due to their implications for sustainability.
structural capacity and long-term durability for Thin concrete pavement (TCP) design, however, is
the application but also are aesthetically pleasing

Figure 3.5 Permeable interlocking concrete paver Figure 3.6 Vehicular interlocking concrete pavers
blocks make an aesthetically pleasing, well-drained being placed in a historic downtown area (note
pavement for low-volume streets and parking lots the use of colored concrete to provide a visual
(photo courtesy of Interlocking Concrete Pavement offset for the crosswalk) (photo courtesy of Tom Van
Institute) Dam, CTLGroup)

22 Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
truly new and has yet to gain widespread acceptance 5. References
in North America. TCP design originates in Chile
Cervantes, V., and J. Roesler. 2009. Performance of Con-
(Covarrubias and Covarrubias 2007 and is still under
crete Pavements with Optimized Slab Geometry. Research
evaluation there as well as in a number of other coun-
Report ICT-09-053. Urbana, IL: Illinois Center for
tries. In North America, considerable work has been
Transportation. University of Illinois. (http://ict.illinois.
conducted at the University of Illinois with very prom-
ising results (Cervantes and Roesler 2009).
accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
The basic concept is simple. Stresses are generated in
Covarrubias, J.P.T., and J.P.V. Covarrubias.
concrete slabs through a combination of traffic and
2007. TCPThin Concrete Pavements. (http://sit-
environmental loads. The larger the concrete slab,
the more truck axles it will carry at one time and the
higher the stress incurred due to temperature and
per.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
moisture gradients. Over time, the repeated stresses
generated by the combination of traffic and environ- Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). 2011. Inno-
mental loading will result in fatigue cracking of the vationsPrecast Concrete Pavement Systems. (www.fhwa.
slab. By reducing slab size to a square with the dimen-; accessed Dec. 5,
sions of one-half a lane (6 ft by 6 ft), the stresses gen- 2011)
erated are significantly reduced to the point that slab
thickness can be reduced by almost half. The reduc- Fort Miller Co., Inc. 2011. Super-Slab. (www.super-
tion in slab thickness will be accompanied by higher; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
deflections; thus the need for good base support that
Hall, K., D. Dawood, S. Vanikar, R. Tally, Jr., T.
resists pumping and erosion is emphasized (Cervantes
Cackler, et al. 2007. Long-Life Concrete Pavements
and Roesler 2009).
in Europe and Canada. Washington, D.C.: FHWA.
The promise of TCP design is that the reduction in FHWA-PL-07-027.
slab thickness will substantially reduce the economic
Harrington, D., F. Abdo, W. Adaska, and C. Hazaree.
and environmental costs of concrete pavements. Slab
2010. Guide for Roller-Compacted Concrete Pavements.
thickness of as little as 4 to 6 inches may be all that is
SN298. Ames, IA: National Concrete Pavement Tech-
required to carry moderate to heavy traffic volumes,
nology Center, Iowa State University.
and early results indicate that there is no need for
embedded steel load transfer devices.

At this juncture, a number of test sites are being con-

structed to investigate TCP designs, but a major barrier
to implementation is that this is a patented technol-
ogy, thus giving most DOTs pause in considering it for

Pervious Concrete
An approach to reducing the amount of water runoff
from hard surfaces is to build pervious pavements
for parking lots and low speed roadways; see Figure
3.7. Pervious pavements allow water to seep into the
ground, thereby recharging groundwater and allowing
natural processes to treat it instead of having to build Figure 3.7 Pervious concrete being placed (photo
extensive treatment works. This design alternative is courtesy of John Kevern, University of Missouri-
discussed in detail in Chapter 9. Kansas City)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS 23
Jonas, J. 2011. Route 141 Green Project in St. Noise: Interim Better Practices for Constructing and Tex-
Louis, MO. Presentation made at the MO/KS Chapter, turing Concrete Pavement Surfaces. TPF-5(139). Ames,
American Concrete Pavement Association, 31st Annual IA: National Concrete Pavement Technology Center,
Portland Cement Concrete Conference, Kansas City, Iowa State University. (
MO. tions/cpscp-interim.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)

Merritt, D., and S. Tayabji. 2009. Precast Prestressed Shields, S., and P. Taylor. 2009. Working a Double
Concrete Pavement for Reconstruction and Rehabilita- Lift: Two-Lift Paving Makes a Comeback in the U.S.
tion of Existing Pavements. Washington, D.C.: FHWA. Roads and Bridges. (
FHWA-HIF-09-003. double-lift; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)

Muench, S.T., J.L. Anderson, J.P. Hartfield, J.R. Koes- Tayabji, S., and S. Lim. 2007. Long-Life Concrete
ter, M. Sderlund, et al. 2011. GreenroadsManual Pavements: Best Practices and Directions from the States.
v1.5. (J.L. Anderson, C.D. Weiland, and S.T. Muench, Washington, D.C.: FHWA. FHWA-HIF-07-030.
Eds.). Seattle, WA: University of Washington. (www. (;; accesses Dec. 5, 2011) accessed Dec. 5, 2011)

Portland Cement Association (PCA). 2011. Roller-Com- Tayabji, S., and K. Hall. 2008. Precast Concrete Pan-
pacted Concrete. ( els for Repair and Rehabilitation of Jointed Concrete
asp; accessed Dec. 5, 2011) Pavements. Washington, D.C.: FHWA. FHWA-
IF-09-003. (
Rasmussen, R.O., R. Bernhard, U. Sandberg, E. Mun. cfm?id=628; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
2007. The Little Book of Quieter Pavements. Washing-
ton, D.C.: Federal Highway Administration. FHWA- Van Dam, T., and P. Taylor. 2009. Building Sustainable
IF-08-004. ( Pavements with Concrete. Ames, IA: National Concrete
ments.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011) Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University.
Rasmussen, R.O., S.I. Garber, G.J. Fick, T.R. Ferragut, ing.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
and P.D. Wiegand. 2008. How to Reduce Tire-Pavement

24 Ch. 3. DESIGNING SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Chapter 4
Peter Taylor
Tom Van Dam

The materials used in making paving concrete have conventional supplementary cementitious materi-
a significant impact on the sustainability of the pave- als (SCMs), including fly ash and slag cement. The
ment. This chapter details the importance of using emergence of lower energy, lower emissions cements,
materials that result in durable, long-lasting concrete including blended cements, portland-limestone
that withstands traffic loadings and climate during its cements, geopolymers, and carbon neutral/sequester-
service life. The chapter primarily focuses on cementi- ing cements, is also discussed. The chapter concludes
tious materials, because of their environmental impact with a discussion of other concrete ingredients, with
as part of mixture design. The discussion emphasizes specific emphasis on the use of recycled and industrial
the need to use the appropriate amount of cementing byproduct materials used as aggregate.
materials by reducing unwarranted cement and using
1. Cementitious Materials In 2008, the total U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emis-
sions were estimated at 7 billion metric tons of CO2
It is well established that the manufacturing of port-
equivalent, 40 million tons (about 0.6 percent) of
land cement (specified under AASHTO M 85/ASTM C
which were generated through the manufacturing of
150) is an energy intensive process, involving heating
portland cement (EPA 2010). This is compared to 5
large quantities of finely ground rocks and minerals to
to 7 percent reported for the rest of the world (Mal-
very high temperatures (roughly 1400C) to produce
hotra 2000). The lower figure for the United States
nodules called clinker that are then interground with
reflects the facts that cement manufacturing in the
gypsum to a fine powder; see Figure 4.1. In addi-
United States is becoming more efficient and that the
tion, the carbon dioxide (CO2) burden is high because
American way of life generates considerably more CO2
the process includes decomposing calcium carbon-
equivalents in sectors other than cement manufactur-
ate (CaCO3) rock into calcium oxide (CaO) and CO2.
ing compared to the rest of the world.
Roughly half of the CO2 generated comes from this
source, and the proportion is increasing as manufac- Roughly 2.8 billion tons of cement is consumed
turers make their process more energy efficient (Van annually worldwide (WBCSD 2010), which equates
Dam and Taylor 2009). The generation of CO2 through to approximately 800 lb of cement per person per
the cement manufacturing process is illustrated in year. While the impact tied to manufacturing portland
Figure 4.2 (Van Dam et al. 2010). cement is relatively high, it must be remembered that
relatively little cement is used in a concrete mix-
The amounts of energy required and CO2 produced
turenormally 12 to 15 percent by mass in pavement
depend on the age and efficiency of the manufactur-
mixtures. The other constituent materials (aggregate,
ing plant. Many older plants use a wet process that
water, SCMs, and admixtures) typically have very little
includes drying the materials from slurry. Many of
energy or CO2 impact associated with them, thus mak-
these plants have closed in the United States as a
ing concrete a reasonably efficient material as a whole.
result of economic pressures and because newer, more
For example, the 800 lb of cement per person per
efficient dry-process facilities have come on line. The
year discussed previously would make roughly 5,600
FHWA INVEST tool gives credit for cement supplied
lb of concrete, making concrete the most commonly
from efficient Energy Star plants (see Chapter 10).
used building material on the planet with only water
Approximately 0.8 to 1.0 tons of CO2 are produced
being used in greater amounts. Concrete is literally the
per ton of cement (Hanle et al. ND, Van Dam and
foundation upon which modern civilization is built.
Taylor 2009), with the U.S. national average currently
listed as 0.927 tons of CO2 equivalent produced per
ton of cement (NREL 2011).

Figure 4.2 CO2 generation in cement

Figure 4.1 A cement kiln (photo courtesy of PCA) manufacturing (Van Dam et al. 2010)

26 Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Work is ongoing to quantify the life-cycle environmen- Reducing Portland Cement Clinker in
tal impact of pavement materials, including concrete Cement
(MIT 2010). Reducing the portland cement clinker content in
Although the global impact of cement manufacturing the cement directly reduces the GHG emissions and
on GHG emissions is large, it must be remembered energy consumption associated with cement manu-
that the burdens can be reduced by any combination facturing. Portland cement can be supplemented in
of four actions: concrete mixtures with the use of so-called supple-
mentary cementitious materials (SCMs) and/or with
Reduce the energy and GHG emissions associated finely ground limestone. SCMs are largely byproducts
with portland cement clinker production. from other industries, such as the burning of pulver-
ized coal at power plants or the production of iron
Reduce the amount of portland cement clinker in
from ore in a blast furnace, but can also be produced
the cement.
from natural materials such as clay. These processes
Reduce the amount of cement in the concrete also result in GHG emissions and energy consumption
mixture. but at lower rates than clinker production.

Use concrete more efficiently in a pavement over SCMs chemically and physically complement the
the life cycle. hydration of portland cement, often resulting in more
durable concrete. Hydration of portland cement pro-
Each of these is discussed in following sections. duces calcium silicate hydrate (C-S-H) that provides
the backbone of strength and impermeability of the
cementitious system. But portland cement hydration
More Efficient Clinker Production
also produces calcium hydroxide (CaOH), a crystal-
The manufacturing process for cement is continually line material; see Figure 4.3. Calcium hydroxide
being improved and made more efficient by the use contributes little to strength or impermeability. Most
of more efficient kilns, more efficient grinding equip- SCMs contain glassy silica and aluminate phases that
ment, optimized transportation, and modified process react with the calcium hydroxide to form more C-S-H
control. The use of alternative fuels including tires and and/or calcium silica aluminate hydrate (C-S-A-H),
bio-fuels helps reduce the combustion of nonrenew- enhancing the long-term performance of the concrete
able resources while removing them from the waste mixture. The types of commonly used SCMS are dis-
stream (PCA 2009). Burning hazardous organic waste cussed in more detail in a later section.
such as solvents and oils in cement kilns is benefi-
cial not only because it reduces the amount of fossil
fuel combusted but also because the extremely high
temperatures decomposes them completely, rendering
them non-hazardous (Basel Convention 2009).

Another approach to reduce consumption of nonre-

newable resources while reducing waste destined for
landfills is the use of industrial byproducts such as fly
ash (Bhatty, 2006), foundry sand, slag, mill scale, and
cement kiln dust as raw feed.

Work is ongoing to identify means of making cement

manufacturing more efficient by modifying its molecu-
lar composition. This work is likely to take several
years to find its way into everyday practice. Figure 4.3 Scanning electron micrograph of C-S-H
and CaOH crystals (Kosmatka and Wilson 2011)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS 27
One or more SCMs can be included in the cement by in paving concrete (e.g., a traditional concrete paving
inter-grinding with the clinker or by blending with mixture may require a minimum six-sack mix, which
cement at the cement plant, in which case they are is equivalent to 564 lb/yd3 concrete). This minimum
sold as blended cements under AASHTO M 240/ASTM cement content requirement may have been appropri-
C 595. Alternatively, it is common to blend the SCMs ate before the common use of chemical admixtures
with the cement and other concrete ingredients at the and the adoption of optimized aggregate grading, but
batch plant. may no longer be relevant using todays concrete and
paving technologies.
Under existing U.S. standards for plain portland
cement (AASHTO M 85/ASTM C 150), the system Performance of a mixture is fundamentally controlled
may contain up to 5 percent ground limestone as well by the water-to-cementitious-materials (w/cm) ratio as
as up to 5 percent inorganic processing additions. In long as there is sufficient paste in the mixture to fill the
practice, the amount of ground limestone and inor- voids between the aggregate particles and to separate
ganic processing additions are less, limited by the loss- the aggregate particles so that they will flow past each
on-ignition (LOI) requirement. The standards impose other in the fresh state. However, workability can be
limitations to ensure that the performance of such improved with the use of admixtures, within limits,
materials is not reduced. Consideration is being given and by reducing paste demand through use of an opti-
to increasing the amount of permitted ground lime- mized aggregate gradation that contains coarse, inter-
stone as in Canada and Europe (Hooton et al. 2007). mediate, and fine particles (Taylor et al. 2006). As long
as the concrete is workable and is placed with good
Specifications exist for both blended and perfor- consolidation, long-term performance will generally be
mance cements (Van Dam and Smith 2011). Blended improved by reducing the cementitious content. This
cements are described under AASHTO M 294/ASTM means that paving mixtures can be made with lower
C 595, which impose limits and requirements on cementitious contents than the traditional six-sack
the source and performance of all of the ingredients. concrete mixture without compromising engineer-
These cements are a blend of portland cement and ing performance. Education, investment in additional
one or more SCMs. Ternary cements containing two aggregate bins, and improved quality assurance may be
SCMs can also be created at the batch plant by blend- necessary to reduce the risk of failures.
ing more than one SCM, a practice often used to
address side effects of one SCM through the inclusion
of another SCM. Extremely efficient mixtures can be Reduce Concrete Used Over the Life
prepared using such systems (Tikalsky 2007). How- Cycle
ever, it has been noted that batch plantcreated ternary All things equal, sustainability is improved by reducing
mixtures require expertise and close attention to detail, the amount of concrete used for a given application.
dictating the need for a high level of quality control. But it is essential that this is considered over the life
cycle of the pavement, and not just in the short term.
In addition to blended cements, ASTM C 1157 is a
Two essential elements to accomplish this are appro-
performance standard for hydraulic cements that
priate design (as discussed in Chapter 3) and the use
has no requirements regarding the composition of the
of durable concrete materials.
cement but instead imposes performance limits. ASTM
C 1157 cements with 10 percent limestone have been With regards to the former point, there is short-term
produced and used successfully on pavement projects economic and environment-related pressure to reduce
in several states (Hooton 2009, Van Dam et al. 2010). the thickness of concrete pavements, lowering both
the initial cost and the environmental footprint. The
use of improved design methodologies and appro-
Reducing Cementitious Contents in
priate design details (e.g., proper joint spacing, load
transfer devices, quality base, and so on) can accom-
Many specifications require that a minimum amount plish this without compromising long-term structural
of cementitious material (or portland cement) be used performance. But it is essential that this be done with

28 Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
caution, as thickness correlates with structural capac- Fly ash is a byproduct of burning pulverized coal for
ity, and arbitrarily using thinner concrete will likely the generation of electrical power. The rock embedded
compromise one of the benefits of using a concrete in the coal melts in the furnace and is carried up the
pavement, which is the potential to provide many stack in the flue gases. As it rapidly cools, small glassy
years of low-maintenance service. Specifying a con- spheres are formed that are collected before the flue
crete thickness insufficient to carry traffic over the gases are emitted to the air; see Figure 4.4. Because
design life can have large negative impacts on sustain- of the small size, glassy form, and chemical composi-
ability (economic, environmental, and social), not only tion of the ash, it dissolves and reacts with the cement
because the pavement will need to be replaced sooner paste to contribute to the performance of the mixture.
than anticipated but also because of traffic delays dur- About 63 million tons of fly ash were produced in the
ing repeated repair and reconstruction. The counter to United States in 2009, of which about 12 million tons
this is that innovative design may result in significantly were used either to make cement or in concrete (ACAA
improved sustainability even if the short-term initial 2009).
economic and environmental costs are slightly higher.
This is why it is essential that a life-cycle approach be Fly ash is currently specified in AASHTO M 295/ASTM
taken when evaluating design changes. C 618 in two classes based on the chemical composi-
tion. The differences are generally influenced by the
One of the hallmarks of concrete pavement is its source of the coal. In general, Class C fly ash is higher
legendary longevity. It is reasonable to assume that in lime content (CaO) and tends to be more reactive
a properly designed concrete pavement will meet at early ages than Class F. The higher CaO content is
or exceed its design life. It is also known that pave- beneficial for early strength gain but can have negative
ments can prematurely fail even if they are structurally effects on alkali-silica reactivity and sulfate resistance.
adequate. To address this, in addition to proper design, It should be noted that the specification for fly ash is
all the other stagesmaterial selection, construction, broad and that two ashes from different sources, albeit
and maintenancehave to be adequate and appropri- of the same class, are likely to perform very differently;
ate to ensure longevity. From a cementitious materials therefore, performance testing should be conducted to
perspective, it is paramount that the right materials are determine if the chosen fly ash is behaving as desired
selected and proportioned correctly for the environ- (Taylor et al. 2006).
ment to which the pavement will be exposed (Taylor
et al. 2006). Other factors that need to be considered Dosage of fly ash is typically between 15 and 40 per-
are the effects that the cementitious materials selection cent by mass of cement. The amount of fly ash that can
will have on the surface characteristics of the pavement
leading to changes in reflectivity, which contributes
both to the albedo (e.g., urban heat island effect) and
night-time safety as discussed in Chapter 9.

2. Supplementary Cementitious
As discussed above, most SCMs are byproducts from
other industries that beneficially react with portland
cement to enhance the performance of concrete. The
effective use of SCMs reduces not only the amount of
portland cement required but also the need to dispose
of what otherwise would be industrial waste.

The two most commonly used SCMs in paving con- Figure 4.4 Backscatter electron image of fly ash
crete are fly ash and slag cement. particles (Kosmatka and Wilson 2011)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS 29
be used is often limited by concerns of delayed setting 3. Emerging Cementitious
times and lower early strength gain. In some cases,
there may be a potential for undesirable incompatibili-
ties and a perceived increase in the risk of salt scaling Work is ongoing in many institutions looking at non-
(Taylor et al. 2006). Judicious increases in dosage portland cement based binders (Taylor 2010). Inves-
can be accommodated with attention to detail in mix tigations include the use of geopolymers (Van Dam
proportioning and construction workmanship. Local 2010) and alkali-activated fly ash products as well as
sources will often dictate the availability of acceptable materials fabricated using waste materials. These are
fly ash within a market. reported to carry significantly lower carbon and energy
burdens than portland cement while providing equiva-
Work is ongoing to find alternative methods to char- lent or superior performance. Some new cements even
acterize fly ash so that mixture performance can be claim to consume CO2 in manufacture (FHWA 2010).
better predicted. Many systems have been patented, but they are gener-
ally difficult to produce and work with. There are also
Slag cement, formerly known as ground granulated
safety risks associated with some systems that require
blast furnace slag (GGBFS), is the material left after
the use of a highly alkaline activating solution. Some
extraction of iron from iron ore; see Figure 4.5. When
systems may also require more processing, resulting in
quenched from the molten state and ground to the
increased energy consumption. Significant barriers to
fineness of cement, it is an extremely effective SCM.
the use of these materials are as follow:
Slag cement is specified by ASTM C 989, and about 3
million tons are used in concrete in the United States Portland cement is inexpensive and robust
every year (SCA 2011). It is generally used in pave-
ments in dosages up to 50 percent but is limited by Practitioners are often resistant to change.
concerns of early strength gain, especially when placed Future work on cementitious materials will likely
during cooler ambient temperatures, and scaling include finding alternative sources of raw materials
resistance. As with fly ash, usage tends to be regional that will not involve the decomposition of carbonate
because of limitations on the cost effectiveness of but rather use calcium-rich industrial byproducts, or
transporting it long distances. possibly shifting away from the use of calcium-based
cements entirely and perhaps using magnesium-silicate
raw materials.

The anatase form of titanium dioxide has been known

for decades to have the ability to keep surfaces clean.
A cement containing this compound is now available,
although it is more expensive than normal portland
cement. Titanium dioxide photocatalyic cements
reportedly can break down the harmful compounds of
nitrogen oxides (NOx) (Chen and Poon 2009). These
systems have been used in Europe, and trials sections
are being installed in the United States.

4. Aggregates
Aggregates comprise the bulk of the volume of a con-
Figure 4.5 Petrographic optical micrograph of slag crete mixture. Important aggregate characteristics are
cement particles (image courtesy of CTLGroup) gradation, type/source, and durability.

30 Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Gradation transported some distance by natural forces. Energy
Aggregates are often classified by particle size, being and CO2 burdens associated with obtaining and
normally defined as coarse and fine split at the processing these materials are minimal because of the
No. 4 (0.187 in. [4.75 mm]) nominal sieve opening. limited amount of processing required. In some cases
This split is used to reduce the risk of segregation of washing is required to remove clayey dust, with the
the material in stockpiles. Ideally the aggregates in a attendant use of water which will have to be treated.
concrete mixture should be composed of optimized, Sources of high-quality natural aggregates are being
well graded particle sizes representing the range of depleted, leading to the need to consider whether the
sieve sizes (Taylor et al. 2006). This does not mean current specification requirements (AASHTO M 6
that good concrete cannot be made with less than ideal and M 80/ASTM C 33) are overly restrictive or to find
aggregate gradations, but the probability of success is methods to beneficiate unacceptable materials.
increased with improved aggregate systems.
Natural aggregate particles tend to be rounded and
If necessary, multiple aggregate stockpiles representing smooth from tumbling in rivers or glaciers, producing
different sized materials should be blended to create good workability of the mixture but potentially reduc-
the desired aggregate grading. This, and the use of as ing flexural strength; see Figure 4.7.
large a nominal maximum aggregate size as practical
for a given situation, will allow the reduction of the
amount of cementitious materials required in a mix- Crushed
ture as shown in Figure 4.6, thus reducing costs and In locations where suitable natural aggregates are not
environmental impact. readily available, aggregate can be mined from bedrock
then crushed and sieved to suitable sizes; again, see
Figure 4.7. Generally the dust in these aggregates is
Aggregate Type
not clayey, and therefore higher quantities of material
Natural passing the #200 sieve can be accommodated. Addi-
Natural aggregates, often referred to as pit-run grav- tional energy consumption and emissions are associ-
els, are extracted from river beds or pits with mini- ated with mining and crushing activities to obtain
mum crushing or processing. They tend to be of a these materials. The selection of crushing equipment
mixed geological composition because they have been can influence the shape of the aggregate particles, and
care should be taken to avoid systems that produce

Figure 4.6 Reduction of cementitious content with Figure 4.7 Rounded (left) and crushed natural
increasing coarse aggregate size (based on ACI aggregates (photo courtesy of Portland Cement
211) Association)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS 31
narrow, flaky, or elongated particles, as these will paving concrete and supporting layers. This is benefi-
negatively impact workability and have a tendency to cial because it reduces the demand for virgin aggre-
fracture during processing. gates and also reduces the need to place the waste
materials into landfills.
The workability of mixtures made with crushed mate-
rials is generally lower than in mixtures with rounded In pavements, the most common application for
aggregates, meaning that additional paste may be recycled materials is in the subbase or base layers. This
required to achieve workability. On the other hand, can be achieved in-situ using mobile crushing equip-
flexural strengths are normally higher. ment, significantly reducing transportation costs and
environmental impact (Meijer 2008). If recycled mate-
rials are used in concrete, the mixes have to be propor-
Light-Weight Aggregates
tioned and tested in the lab to ensure that setting times
Light-weight aggregate (LWA) is normally a manufac- and strengths are satisfactory. Consideration should
tured product, made by heating shale, clay, or slate in also be given to why the original pavement failed;
a rotary kiln to about 2000F; see Figure 4.8. The final recycled concrete containing alkali-reactive aggregates
product is ceramic in nature and contains controlled or aggregates prone to D-cracking may not be advis-
amounts of air bubbles, thus increasing aggregate able for use in paving concrete unless mitigated.
porosity and reducing density. Energy is required to
produce LWA. However, benefits have been reported The most common industrial byproduct material used
(in reduced cracking risk from internal curing) from as aggregate is air-cooled blast furnace slag (ACBFS)
the use of a LWA as a portion of the fine aggregate which is produced from the iron blast furnace. This
(Henkensiefken et al. 2009). Further, for structural material has been used in supporting layers and as
applications, the lighter weight will result in a reduc- aggregate in paving concrete. Work currently being
tion of the structural members, meaning less concrete conducted for the Federal Highway Administration
will be required. LWA coarse aggregates are not com- (FHWA) suggests that if ACBFS is used in paving con-
monly used in pavements. crete, special design and construction considerations
must be followed to ensure acceptable performance
(Morian et al. 2011). Extreme caution must be exer-
Recycled and Industrial Byproduct Materials cised if other sources of slag (e.g., steel furnace) are
There is increased interest in recycling concrete and being considered for use, as cases of extreme instabil-
other construction waste for use as aggregates in ity and volume change have been reported in some
instances, which will lead to rapid pavement failure.

Other uses of recycled materials are discussed in

Chapter 8.

In general, aggregates have limited direct impact on
the durability of a mixture unless they are susceptible
to D-cracking or are reactive, which are serious issues,
or are easily polished.

D-cracking is a problem where aggregates with rela-

tively high-porosity and low permeability tend to
absorb water that expands when it freezes, causing
the aggregate to fracture and the concrete to crack. It
Figure 4.8 Light-weight fine aggregate (image is a regional problem, most common in the Midwest
courtesy of Buildex) from Kansas through southern Michigan and into

32 Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Ohio, in that aggregates prone to D-cracking tend to states resort to limiting the amount of calcareous mate-
come from a given geological form. Aggregates that rials in their aggregates to limit this effect, although
are prone to this should not be used if possible. If many states must use these materials because of their
they must be used, the susceptible aggregates should abundance and lower risk of alkali-silica reaction. In
be crushed to maximum size of 0.5 to 0.75 in. and such cases, surface texturing becomes increasingly
blended with larger, non-susceptible aggregates. This important to maintain skid resistance.
will require that in some locations aggregates will need
to be imported, with the attendant fuel load. Research
is needed to find methods to prevent prone aggregates 5. Water
from expanding or to find applications where they can The amount of mix water in paving concrete is primar-
be safely used. ily governed by the w/cm ratio and paste requirement
of the aggregate system and the type and dosage of the
Alkali-silica reactivity (ASR) is a chemical reaction
chemical admixtures in use. The presence of SCMs
between certain siliceous minerals within aggregate
will normally reduce the amount of water needed for
that react with alkali hydroxides in the concrete pore
a given cementitious content. Therefore, choosing
solution, forming a gel that expands when it imbibes
a good aggregate system, reducing the cementitious
water causing the concrete to crack. Almost every state
content (within limits), and using water-reducing
in the United States has reactive aggregates. Work is
admixtures will all help to reduce the amount of
ongoing to develop rapid, reliable tests to assess reac-
water required to achieve a given workability. There is
tivity of aggregates and mixtures and to find ways to
normally more water in a typical paving mixture than
prevent their expansion. Use of certain SCMs, particu-
is required to hydrate all the cement. Typically added
larly Class F fly ash and slag cement, are known to be
water accounts for about 6 percent of the mass of a
effective at mitigating expansion and damage from the
use of susceptible aggregates. Lithium nitrite is also
known to be an effective additive. See AASHTO PP The quality of the mix water is normally not much of a
65-10, Determining the Reactivity of Concrete Aggregates concern. Water that is potable is considered acceptable
and Selecting Appropriate Measures for Preventing Delete- for use in concrete. Water contaminated by organics
rious Expansion in New Concrete Construction, for rec- and sugars will tend to delay setting and may reduce
ommended testing protocols and mitigation strategies. early strengths. Grey water or water that has been recy-
cled at a batch plant may accumulate dissolved solids,
Alkali-carbonate reactivity (ACR) is a rare deleteri-
sulfates, and chlorides that may affect mixture perfor-
ous reaction between certain dolomitic limestone of a
mance and durability. Therefore, wash water used to
very specific microstructure and hydroxyl ions in the
clean tracks and equipment, as well as water recycled
concrete pore solution. The reaction is not perfectly
from returned trucks, should be processed to remove
understood but likely involves both the expansive
solids and organics before it is released to the environ-
formation of brucite (magnesium hydroxide) and the
ment or before it is re-used in a batch plant. ASTM C
dissolution and swelling of clay phases within the
1602 provides some limitations on the quality of mix
aggregate. Alkali-carbonate reactivity is very damag-
water, particularly recycled water and wash water.
ing, and there is no effective mitigation strategy; thus,
susceptible aggregate must not be used. See AASHTO Two other significant uses of water at a construction
PP 65-10, Determining the Reactivity of Concrete Aggre- site are for achieving the appropriate moisture con-
gates and Selecting Appropriate Measures for Preventing tent to facilitate densifying soil and unbound granular
Deleterious Expansion in New Concrete Construction, for materials and for dust control. The amounts of water
recommended testing protocols. used should be balanced between the needs to achieve
engineering requirements and to minimize waste. Dust
Polishing is the tendency of an aggregate at the pave-
control on unpaved surfaces can be enhanced by the
ment surface to become smooth under the action of
use of calcium chloride.
traffic, leading to a reduction in skid resistance. Some

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS 33
6. Admixtures the amount of steel used in continually reinforced
concrete pavements (CRCP) can be significant; there-
Chemical admixtures are a common constituent in
fore, the designer must balance the environment and
modern paving concrete, being added to modify one
cost impacts of including the steel with the improved
or more of the fresh or hardened properties of the
longevity of the pavement.
concrete. Chemical admixtures are typically used in
pavement mixtures to entrain air, increase workability, Dowel bars (smooth bars), or simply dowels, are
and/or control time of setting. Admixtures are used placed in concrete across transverse joints to provide
in small dosages and usually comprise less than 0.2 vertical support and to transfer loads across joints.
percent by volume of concrete. Dowel bars are typically used on heavy truck routes.
Dowel bars reduce the potential for faulting, pump-
Common chemical admixtures are specified using
ing, and corner breaks in jointed concrete pavements
AASHTO M 154/ASTM C 260 and AASHTO M 194/
(Smith et al. 1990, ACPA 1991).
ASTM C 494. The basic ingredients used in water-
reducing and retarding admixtures are sugars and Tiebars (deformed bars), or rebar, are placed across
lignosulfonates obtained from corn or wood. The most longitudinal joints on centerlines or where slabs meet.
common accelerating admixture is calcium chloride, Tiebars prevent faulting and lateral movement of
although non-chloride based accelerators are also the slabs and assist with load transfer between slabs.
available. The primary materials used in modern Tiebars are also used to connect edge fixtures such as
high-range water-reducing admixtures (HRWRA) are curbs and gutters to the pavement.
polycarboxylate ethers and polyvinyl copolymers syn-
thesized from oil-based materials. Reinforcement may be used in concrete pavements to
improve the ability of concrete to carry tensile stresses
Water-reducing admixtures (WRAs) are primarily used and to hold tightly together any random transverse
to reduce the amount of water required in a mixture to cracks that develop in the slab; see Figure 4.10. Gener-
achieve a given workability. For a mixture with a fixed ally, cracking in jointed concrete pavements is con-
w/cm ratio, water reducers can be used to reduce the trolled by limiting the spacing between joints. When
amount of cementitious material required, leading to the concrete slab is reinforced, joint spacing can be
significant savings in cost and environmental impact.
They also permit use of lower w/cm ratios in mixtures,
leading to improved durability and longevity.

Air-entraining admixtures (AEAs) are used to develop

a system of small air bubbles to increase the resistance
of critically saturated concrete to deicer salt scaling
and cyclic freezing and thawing, increasing longevity
of the pavement; see Figure 4.9.

As previously mentioned, lithium-based admixtures

can be used to mitigate alkali-silica reaction.

7. Reinforcement
Dowel bars, tiebars, and reinforcement may be used
in concrete pavements to help the concrete carry
tensile stresses and/or to transfer loads across joints.
The most common reinforcement material is steel,
and the energy requirement to process steel is high. Figure 4.9 Air-entrained concrete (image courtesy
Dowels and tiebars are used in small quantities, but of CTLGroup)

34 Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
increased. The most common reinforcement is embed- voids and thus the paste requirement, resulting in
ded steel placed either as welded wire fabric or as rein- minimal cement and water required. Achieving this
forcement bars. Fiber-reinforcement can also be used. should not be at the expense of significantly increased
Fibers are commonly composed of steel or polymers, processing or transportation impacts.
although various other materials (e.g., carbon, cellu-
lose, glass, and so on) have been used. Aggregates should be resistant to the environment and
not prone to D-cracking, ASR, or ACR. Cementitious
content should be kept as low as possible without
8. Proportioning compromising mixture performance, both in the fresh
and hardened state. The selection of the cementitious
The aim of mixture proportioning is to find the
system should be to maximize SCM contents while
combinations of available and specified materials that
preventing ASR, resisting freezing and thawing dis-
will ensure that a mixture is cost effective and meets
tress, and meeting other specified requirements. The
all performance requirements. In the case of sustain-
quality of the paste, including the w/cm ratio and air-
able design, minimizing the pavements environmental
void system, should be selected based on the environ-
footprint (e.g., embodied energy and GHG emissions)
ment to which the mixture will be exposed.
over the pavement life cycle must be one of the perfor-
mance requirements. Guidelines for achieving these objectives are available
in Integrating Materials and Construction Practices for
The freedom to vary mixture proportions depends on
Concrete Pavements (Taylor et al. 2006).
the specification. There is a movement to write speci-
fications that are less recipe based and more focused
on the desired performance. This places decision mak- 9. References
ing, and risk, in the hands of the concrete provider
and paving contractor, with the attendant economic American Coal Ash Association (ACAA). 2009. Coal
and environmental impacts. Such a trend will mean Combustion Product Production and Use Survey Report.
that everyone in the process has to be better educated (
about the broad impacts of their decisions. duction_and_Use_Survey_Revised_100511.pdf;
accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
Ideally a concrete paving mixture will use an opti-
mized combined aggregate gradation that minimizes Bhatty, J.I., J. Gajda, D. Broton, and F. Botha. 2006.
Coal-Prep Wastes in Cement ManufacturingCommercial-
ization of Technology. ICCI Project Number: 04-1/4.1A-
2. Illinois Clean Coal Institute.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 2010.

Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks:
19902008. Washington, D.C.: U.S. EPA. EPA

Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). 2010.

Advanced High Performance Materials For Highway
Applications. FHWA-HIF-10-002. Washington, D.C.:

Hanle, L.J., K.K. Jayaraman, and J.S. Smith. ND. CO2

Emissions Profile of the U.S. Cement Industry. Washing-
ton, D.C.: U.S. EPA. (
Figure 4.10 Reinforcing for CRCP (photo courtesy ence/ei13/ghg/hanle.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
of Mike Ayers, American Concrete Pavement

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS 35
Henkensiefken, R., D. Bentz, T. Nantung, and J. Weiss.; accessed Dec. 5,
2009. Volume change and cracking in internally 2011)
cured mixtures made with saturated lightweight aggre-
gate under sealed and unsealed conditions. Cement & Slag Cement Association (SCA). 2011. (http://slagce-
Concrete Composites, 31.; accessed Jan. 2011)

Hooton, R.D., M. Nokken, and M.D.A. Thomas. 2007. Taylor, P. C. 2010. New Technologies for Sustainable
Portland Limestone Cements: State-of-the-Art Report and Concrete. In Proceedings-Concrete for a Sustainable
Gap Analysis for CSA A 3000. SN3053. Cement Asso- Environment. Johannesburg, SA: Concrete Society of
ciation of Canada. Southern Africa.

Kostmatka, S. H., and M.L. Wilson. 2011. Design Taylor, P., S. Kosmatka, G. Voigt, et al. 2006. Integrat-
and Control of Concrete Mixtures, 15th Ed. PCA EB1. ing Materials and Construction Practices for Concrete
Skokie, IL: Portland Cement Association. Pavements: A State-of-the-Practice Manual. Ames, IA:
National Center for Concrete Pavement Technology,
Malhotra, V.M. 2000. Role of Supplementary Cement- Iowa State University. FHWA HIF-07-004. (www.
ing Materials in Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions.;
In Concrete Technology for a Sustainable Development in accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
the 21st Century, Gjorv, O. E. and K. Sakai, Eds. Lon-
don: Taylor & Francis. Tikalsky, P.J., V. Schaefer, K. Wang, B. Scheetz, T. Rup-
now, A. St. Clair, M. Siddiqi, and S. Marquez. 2007.
Meijer, J. 2008. Environmental Benefits of Two- Development of Performance Properties of Ternary Mix-
Lift Pavement: A Quantitative Perspective Based on tures: Phase I Final Report. Ames, IA: National Concrete
Life Cycle Assessment. Presentation made at 2008 Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University.
National Two-Lift Paving Open House, Salina, KS.
( Van Dam, T., and K. Smith. 2011. Blended and Perfor-
documents/-Environmentalbenefits-JMeijer.pdf; mance Cements. ACPT Tech Brief. Washington, D.C.:
accessed Dec. 5, 2011) FHWA. FHWA-HIF-XX-XXX. In Publication.

Michigan Institute of Technology (MIT). 2010. Life Van Dam, T., and P. Taylor. 2009. Building Sustainable
Cycle Assessment (LCA) of Highway Pavements: Interim Pavements with Concrete. Ames, IA: National Concrete
Report. Cambridge, MA: MIT, Concrete Sustainability Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University.
Hub. ( (
sLCAsummaryDec2010.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011) ing.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)

MIT. ND. (Various news articles.) ( Van Dam, T., B. Smartz, and T. Laker. 2010. Use of
cshub/news/news.html; accessed Dec. 5. 2011) Performance Cements (ASTM C 1157) in Colorado
and Utah: Laboratory Durability Testing and Case
Morian, D., T. Van Dam, K. Smith, and R. Perera. Studies. Presentation made at International Confer-
2011. Use of Air-Cooled Blast Furnace Slag as Coarse ence on Sustainable Concrete Pavements, Sacramento,
Aggregate in Concrete Pavements: A Guide to Best Prac- CA.
tice. Washington, D.C.: FHWA. In publication.
Van Dam, T.J. 2010. Geopolymer Concrete. CPTP Tech
National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). 2011. Brief. Washington, D.C.: FHWA, Concrete Pavement
U.S. Life-Cycle Inventory Database. (; Technology Program. FHWA-HIF-10-014.
accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
World Business Council for Sustainable Development
Portland Cement Association (PCA). 2009. Report on (WBCSD). 2010. (; accessed
Sustainable Manufacturing. Skokie, IL: PCA. (www. Dec. 5, 2011)

36 Ch. 4. SUSTAINABLE CONCRETE PAVEMENT MATERIALS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Chapter 5

Gary Fick

Duration of the construction phase is relatively short

compared to the total life of a concrete pavement. One
might assume, therefore, that the potential for sustain-
ability improvements during the construction phase is
limited. In fact, the opposite is true: A large contribu-
tor to a concrete pavements sustainability is its long
service life, which is directly related to initial construc-
tion quality. Efforts to enhance sustainability through
optimized design and material selection can be negated
through improper construction processes and/or a lack
of quality control; see Figure 5.1.

After a brief overview of sustainability issues related to

concrete pavement construction, this chapter discusses
how these issues can be addressed during the various
phases of a traditional, slipform paving construction
project. The chapter ends with brief discussions of Figure 5.1 Initial construction quality helps
other construction methods and their potential for realize the designed long-term performance
enhancing pavement sustainability. (image courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity Construction
Management, Inc.)
1. Overview of Construction It should be noted that discharge of materials from a
Issues Related to Sustainability roadway construction project is regulated by federal
law and enforced individually by each state. Regula-
In addition to implementing proper construction and tions and mitigation measures are ever changing and
quality control processes that ensure a durable, long-life apply equally to all types of roadway construction
pavement, maximizing pavement sustainability during projects. There are no specific measures for concrete
the construction phase involves addressing immediate pavement projects that differ from other types of road-
environmental and societal impacts of construction. way construction. Therefore, this facet of environmen-
These include the following: tal impact is not addressed specifically in this chapter.
Erosion and storm water runoff Readers should fully inform themselves of the appro-
priate statutory regulations regarding the discharge of
Emission of greenhouse gases and particulates erodible materials and sediment from a project site.
through equipment exhaust stacks
Generation of airborne dust particulate from con- 2. Traditional Slipform Paving
struction processes
Processes and Impacts on
Noise generated from construction processes Sustainability
Increased road user cost due to traffic delays caused In this section, sustainability-related factors and
by construction suggestions are provided to manage the economic,
environmental, and social impacts of various slipform
To address both the short- and long-term impacts of the
pavement construction processes.
construction process on pavement sustainability, three
categories of activities should be emphasized:
Establishing and Operating a Plant Site
Reducing construction-related waste and disruption
to the surrounding area Typically, for projects over 10,000 yd3 a dedicated con-
crete plant is mobilized. Doing so requires that a plant
Optimizing equipment for maximum fuel efficiency to site be selected and stripped of vegetation and topsoil.
minimize both consumption and exhaust emissions The site may be chemically stabilized and/or plated
Constructing durable concrete pavements as indi- with granular material to minimize pumping soil into
cated by the following characteristics (specifications the aggregate stockpiles and to provide a more weath-
will vary by agency): erproof hauling surface for trucks.

a. Optimized paste content

Managing Economic Impacts
b. Low permeability
First, locate the plant site to minimize the average
c. Adequate entrained air haul distance for the concrete.
d. Strength and thickness as specified Second, locate the site to minimize the haul dis-
tance from the suppliers point of distribution for
e. Uniform mixture properties (within batch and
aggregate material, which comprises the largest
between batches)
volume of the concrete mixture.
In most cases, these issues are addressed as a matter of
practice, as contractors are concerned with maximizing
Managing Environmental Impacts
efficiency and minimizing costs. The rest of this chapter
outlines specific considerations related to these activities Storm water runoff and washout water/sediment
in all the phases of construction. Table 5.1 summarizes should be contained and/or filtered to prevent
concrete pavement construction practices that can lead contamination of local waterways (local statutory
to improved sustainability. requirements apply).

38 Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

A combination of granular materials, such as The plant site should be located far enough from
recycled pavement materials, and water sprinkling residential areas that noise and dust can be miti-
should be used for dust control. gated to a level that is not objectionable.
Tracking mud onto public roadways should be Utilize brownfield sites whenever available and
controlled through the use of a stabilized construc- economically feasible.
tion entrance. Portable wheel wash systems may be
necessary and/or required in some jurisdictions.
Stockpiling Aggregate
Plant sites should be re-vegetated as soon as practi- Aggregates are typically stockpiled using front-end
cal after construction to prevent detrimental runoff. loaders (Figure 5.2) or radial stackers (Figure 5.3).
Avoid extended idling of diesel-powered equipment Either method is acceptable from a quality stand-
to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. point as long as segregation is prevented. Segregated
aggregate can lead to non-uniformity during concrete
production, which will reduce long-term performance.
Managing Social Impacts
Public rights of way owned by the agency should
Managing Economic Impacts
be made available to the contractor for use as plant
sites and borrow sources whenever possible to Radial stackers typically conserve energy when
minimize impacts on the public. connected to an existing power grid, due to more

Table 5.1 Summary of Concrete Pavement Construction Practices That Enhance Pavement Sustainability
Construction Practice Sustainability Benefits
Providing a uniform concrete mixture that meets specifications
Placing dowels, tiebars, and reinforcing in the proper location Enhanced long-term pavement performance
Using proper finishing techniques Smoother pavements, which result in improved
fuel efficiency and reduced vehicle maintenance
Constructing smooth pavements costs for the traveling public
Ensuring timely and effective curing of the concrete pavement
Using alternative fuels Reduced greenhouse gas and particulate emissions
Reducing idling of diesel engines Utilization of fuel generated from renewable
Using equipment that meets or exceeds EPA emission requirements sources
Allocating equipment resources wisely by matching the quantity and
Improved energy efficiency
size of equipment to project needs
Implementing appropriate erosion control measures Preserved water quality in surrounding bodies of
Containing washout sediment water
Optimizing plant site location with respect to the average haul
distance for concrete and delivery of raw materials Reduced fuel consumption
Properly constructing and maintaining haul routes
Water sprinkling of haul routes and plant sites for dust control Control of objectionable airborne particulates
Recycling washout water Conservation of water
Stabilizing construction entrances where construction traffic enters
Mitigation of sediment runoff
public roadways
Using public rights of way for plant sites, staging areas, and borrow Minimized environmental impacts on private
sources property
Mitigating construction noise from exhaust stacks, banging tailgates, Reduced negative impacts on the neighboring
plant site operations, and sawing communities
Considering traffic delays when planning project staging and logistics
Implementing accelerated construction methods that result in reduced Reduced road user costs caused by delays
construction durations and earlier opening of facilities
Reduced concrete waste and enhanced probability
Constructing subgrade and subbase(s) to tighter tolerances
of achieving smooth pavement
Enhanced safety through proper friction
characteristics and reduced tire-pavement noise

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION 39

efficient burning of fuel used in commercial genera- Managing Environmental Impacts
tion of electricity. Dust should be controlled by sprinkling the haul
Front-end loaders may be the preferred option when route with water.
radial stackers are powered by an on-site generator that Tracking mud from the haul route on to public
is not being utilized for other plant site activities. roadways should be minimized by constructing
stabilized construction entrances.
Managing Environmental Impacts
All equipment (generators, front-end loaders) should Managing Societal Impacts
conform to EPA requirements, and the use of alterna- Locations where haul units exit and enter public
tive fuels should be considered whenever economi- roadways should be monitored to reduce traffic
cally feasible, to reduce GHG and particulate emis- delays experienced by the public.
sions from diesel exhaust.
Excessive noise generated by haul units (exhaust
Radial stackers connected to an existing power grid stack, banging tailgates, etc.) should be remedied.
likely result in fewer emissions due to more efficient
burning of fuel used in commercial generation of
electricity. Concrete Production
Recommendations regarding materials and propor-
tioning of concrete mixtures from a sustainable per-
Managing Societal Impacts
spective are addressed in Chapter 4. Once a mixture
Noise and dust from the plant site should be mitigated has been optimized with regard to sustainability, the
through proper site selection and sprinkling. concrete production process should be monitored
and adjusted as needed to achieve the desired results.
Establishing and Maintaining Haul Routes
In most cases, haul routes are constrained by construc-
tion staging and the maintenance of traffic. The primary
sustainability-related issue that should be considered is
preparing and maintaining the haul route in a smooth
and stable condition. Fuel efficiency of the haul units will
degrade on soft/yielding haul routes. Rough haul routes
will lead to an increase in repairs and maintenance to the
haul units. Extremely rough haul routes can cause the
mixture to segregate when non-agitating trucks are used.
Figure 5.2 Front-end loader used for stockpiling
Managing Economic Impacts aggregate (photo courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity
Construction Management, Inc.)
Fuel efficiency is affected by haul route stability. Tempo-
rary haul routes may be stabilized with recycled materi-
als that can be re-used in later phases of the project.
Haul routes should be maintained in a condition that
will reduce the occurrence of unnecessary vehicle
repairs and maintenance.
Maintaining the haul routes in good condition will
also reduce the average cycle time for concrete deliv-
ery, thus requiring fewer trucks and reducing the Figure 5.3 Stockpiling aggregate with a radial
quantity of fuel used per cubic yard of concrete. stacker (photo courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity
Construction Management, Inc.)

40 Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Concrete used for pavement is produced at either a guarantee that quality is improved. Attention to details
central mix plant (Figure 5.4) or a dry batch plant uti- is required.
lizing transit mix trucks (Figure 5.5). Regardless of the
equipment used, it is imperative that the plant produce In particular, the moisture content of the aggregates
a concrete mixture that meets or exceeds specification should be tested frequently and the mixture propor-
requirements, is uniform within each batch, and is also tions adjusted according to the moisture condition of
uniform from batch to batch. Non-uniform concrete the aggregates being incorporated into the concrete.
leads to non-uniform performance, which in turn Thorough mixing is also necessary. There are many
results in premature failure with related maintenance differing specifications regarding mixing time. Mix-
and rehabilitation costs. ing for the minimum specified time may or may not
Non-uniformity of the concrete mixture can also lead produce uniform concrete that meets specification.
to wasted materials, because the concrete producer Each concrete plant and each mixture is unique; mixer
is forced to use more cementitious material to con- uniformity tests (ASTM C 94) should be utilized to
sistently meet specifications. A preferred approach is determine the minimum acceptable mixing time to
to implement quality assurance procedures that will produce uniform concrete.
improve uniformity and lead to the most efficient use Water is a natural resource that should be conserved.
of materials. However, conserving water should not come at the
Most concrete plants utilized for concrete paving proj- expense of dust control or concrete quality (e.g., wash-
ects are equipped with automated batching controls. ing out trucks and cleaning the paver properly). Wash-
While this certainly improves productivity, it is no out water generated at the concrete plant site should
be recycled whenever possible.

The decision about source of water to use on a con-

crete paving project should be based on three criteria:
First, concrete quality. Mixing water should be free of
organics that can degrade quality. Second, the environ-
ment. The overall environmental impact of various
source options should be considered. Because most
potable water sources have been treated in some man-
ner, there is an associated energy expenditure that is
not necessarily needed for the production of concrete.
However, using sources of untreated water (wells,
ponds, and streams) may have an adverse impact on
Figure 5.4 Central mix concrete plant (photo the environment. Some environmental compromise
courtesy of Jim Grove, FHWA) is associated with the choice of a water source. Third,
economic factors. Costs must be factored into the deci-
sion process for choosing a source of water.

Managing Economic Impacts

Energy efficiency is improved by matching plant
production capabilities to the paving operation.

The production of uniform, high-quality con-

crete leads to concrete pavements that perform as
expected or better than expected; thus, the life-
cycle costs of these pavements are lower than for
Figure 5.5 Ready mix concrete plant (photo pavements that have premature failures due to
courtesy of Jim Grove, FHWA) quality deficiencies, non-uniformity, or both.

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION 41

Quality assurance procedures aimed at improving the Dust should be controlled by sprinkling the haul
uniformity of the concrete reduces cost through the route with water.
efficient use of material resources.
Control harmful runoff from washout pits.
Recycle washout water whenever possible.
Managing Environmental Impacts
Dust collectors on concrete plants should be in
proper working order.

Dust generated by plant site traffic should be con-

trolled by sprinkling with water.

Quality assurance procedures aimed at improving the

uniformity of the concrete ensure the efficient use of
material resources.

Managing Societal Impacts

Noise sources at the concrete plant that are a nuisance to
Figure 5.6 Transit mix concrete truck (photo
neighboring businesses or residences should be mitigated. courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity Construction
Management, Inc.)

Transporting Concrete
Various types of hauling equipment are available for
transporting concrete for a paving project. These range
from transit mix trucks (Figure 5.6) to tractor-trailer rigs
(Figure 5.7). From a sustainability perspective, efficiency
should be maximized by matching the type, size, and
number of haul units to project constraints (production
rate, haul route conditions, maneuverability, etc.).

Haul units must be washed out frequently enough to

prevent the build-up of hardened concrete which may
eventually break free and be incorporated in the pave-
Figure 5.7 Tractor trailer concrete hauling unit
ment, causing a future pavement failure. (See the discus-
(photo courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity Construction
sion of water use in the immediately preceding section.) Management, Inc.)
Washout pits (Figure 5.8) should be designed to control
harmful runoff.

Managing Economic Impacts

Haul efficiency should be maximized by matching
the type, size, and number of haul units to the project

Managing Environmental Impacts

All equipment should conform to EPA requirements,
and the use of alternative fuels should be considered Figure 5.8 Washout pit used to clean concrete
whenever economically feasible to minimize emission trucks (photo courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity
of GHGs and particulate through diesel exhaust. Construction Management, Inc.)

42 Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Managing Societal Impacts according to specifications and supported in a
Excessive noise generated by haul units (exhaust manner that will prevent displacement during
stack, banging tailgates, etc.) should be remedied. the paving process.

Locations where haul units enter and exit public Concrete should be well consolidated but not segre-
roadways should be monitored to reduce traffic gated. Vibrator frequency should be monitored and
delays experienced by the public. adjusted to variations in the concrete mixture and
the paver speed. Cores of the pavement should be
taken as soon as possible and visually inspected to
Concrete Placement and Finishing verify that consolidation efforts are adequate and
Placing and finishing concrete pavement is a complex not detrimental.
process that involves the use of sophisticated equip- Proper hand finishing techniques should be consis-
ment in conjunction with the skilled craftsmanship tently implemented.
of crew members. By the time the concrete mixture is
deposited ahead of the paver, there is nothing that the a. Except in rare and isolated conditions, water
equipment and crew can do to improve the material should not be used as a finishing aid. The practice
properties; these properties are strictly a function of of adding water to the surface of the pavement
the raw materials, mixture proportions, and mixing can result in a weakened layer of non-durable
process. However, there are many ways that placement paste at the pavements surface.
and finishing techniques can negatively influence what may b. Care must be take not to over-finish the surface.
be an otherwise acceptable concrete mixture. From a sus- Over-finishing results in a paste-rich, high-per-
tainability perspective, it is imperative that the equip- meability surface layer, which is susceptible to
ment and crew place and finish the concrete pave- shrinkage cracking and surface scaling.
ment in a manner that will maximize the performance
capabilities of the concrete mixture. Acceptable pavement smoothness characteristics
must be achieved by following best practices for
The following items summarize the placing and finish- placing and finishing.
ing processes that are most critical to achieving the
long-term pavement performance that is integral to
Managing Economic Impacts
concrete pavement sustainability. Detailed guidance
regarding these practices can be found in the Integrated Paving equipment should be matched to project
Materials and Construction Practices for Concrete Pave- conditions.
ment (Taylor et al. 2006) and Concrete Pavement Field Subgrade and subbase(s) should be placed to thick-
Reference: Pre-Paving (APWA 2010). ness and smoothness tolerances that will minimize
Embedded steel must be properly placed. waste and meet thickness tolerance specifications
for the concrete pavement.
a. Dowel baskets should be placed in the proper
location, anchored firmly, and positively marked Managing Environmental Impacts
to ensure that saw cuts for contraction joints are
made at the proper location. Smooth pavements improve fuel efficiency.
Dust should be controlled by sprinkling with water.
b. Inserted dowels should be monitored for move-
ment and positively marked to ensure that saw
cuts for contraction joints are made at the proper Managing Societal Impacts
location. Construction noise should be mitigated to reduce
impacts on surrounding areas.
c. Tiebars should be placed at the proper depth
and spacing. Dust should be controlled by sprinkling with water.
d. Continuous reinforcing bars should be spaced Smooth pavements reduce wear and tear on vehicles.

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION 43

Surface Texturing Table 5.2 Concrete Pavement Surface Texture Types

Concrete pavement surface textures provide the fric- Texture Types

tion needed for safe roadways. Surface textures have Diamond
Tined Drag
also been shown to be the primary contributor to (Figure 5.9) (Figure 5.10)
(Figure 5.11)
pavement-tire noise. There are three basic types of Transverse, Burlap New
uniform spacing Artificial surface
concrete pavement surface textures, as shown in
Variations Transverse, turf Restored
Table 5.2. / Uses random spacing Broom surface
Guidance regarding improved procedures for concrete uniform spacing
texturing that contribute to constructing quieter pave-
ments can be found in How to Reduce Tire-Pavement
Noise: Interim Better Practices for Constructing and
Texturing Concrete Pavement Surfaces (Rasmussen et al.

Managing Economic Impacts

Diamond ground textures generally cost more than
tined or drag textures.

Managing Environmental Impacts

Slurry from diamond ground textures should be col- Figure 5.9 Longitudinal tining (photo courtesy of
lected and disposed of properly. Gary Fick, Trinity Construction Management, Inc.)

Managing Societal Impacts

Adequate friction characteristics must be provided
for safe roadways.
Studies have shown that tire-pavement noise is
attributable to positive texture on concrete pave-
ments. Quieter pavements have textures with fewer
positive projections in the surface.

Curing Concrete Figure 5.10 Artificial turf drag texture (photo

courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity Construction
Perhaps one of the most overlooked parts of the con-
Management, Inc.)
crete paving process, curing has a significant impact
on concrete pavement durability and thus on sustain-
ability. Curing must be executed properly to prevent
excessive moisture loss and thus to ensure that suf-
ficient water is available in the concrete to completely
hydrate the cementitious materials and to prevent
shrinkage cracking and excessive warping.
In general, white pigmented curing compound should
be applied before any surface evaporation occurs. All
exposed surfaces of the concrete pavement should
be completely covered (the pavement surface should Figure 5.11 Diamond-ground texture (Rasmussen et
be uniformly white). Precautions should be taken to al. 2008)

44 Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

insulate the concrete during cold weather curing to Managing Economic Impacts
prevent the pavement from freezing before gaining suf- The cost and performance of joint sealants varies
ficient strength. widely. When specifying a joint sealant, perfor-
mance expectations should be balanced by cost-
benefit analyses.
Managing Economic Impacts
Although curing compounds and the curing process Some states choose to leave joints unsealed. This
itself constitute one of the least expensive components decision should be based on actual performance
of the concrete paving process, premature failures asso- studies that are applicable to the intended climate,
ciated with inadequate curing result in unnecessary subbase design, and pavement use conditions.
future maintenance and rehabilitation expenditures.
Managing Environmental Impacts

Managing Environmental Impacts Slurry from wet sawing joints should not be allowed
to drain unfiltered into adjacent waterways.
Some curing compounds may contain materials that
could be hazardous to the environment. If spills Some joint sealants may contain materials that are
occur, they should be contained and mitigated in hazardous to the environment and/or crew; manu-
accordance with local regulations. facturers recommendations should be followed.

Use of environmentally benign curing compounds

Managing Societal Impacts
should be considered when allowed by specification.
Measures should be taken to prevent the dust gener-
ated by dry sawing joints from obstructing the vis-
Managing Societal Impacts ibility of adjacent traffic.
Prevention of premature pavement distresses and
Tire-pavement noise associated with wide joints
related repair activities through the proper application
(> in.) may be objectionable.
of curing compound and techniques reduces work
zone-related traffic delays.
3. New Developments in Con-
Sawing and Sealing Joints crete Pavement That Could
Sawed joints are necessary for non-reinforced pave- Improve Sustainability
ments to prevent uncontrolled cracking. Practices for
sawing and sealing joints vary across the United States.
Two Lift Concrete Pavements
The most common options for green sawing concrete As discussed in Chapter 3, two-lift paving is a tech-
pavement are wet sawing with diamond blades (saw nique that is commonly used in Europe. The construc-
cut depth = T/4 or T/3) and early entry sawing using a tion process involves placing two lifts of concrete pave-
dry diamond blade (saw cut depth = 1 in. to 3 in.). ment, with the top lift placed on the bottom lift while it
is still wet (Figures 5.12 and 5.13). Typically the bottom
Dimension sawing (joint widening) is necessary for lift is approximately 80 percent of the thickness and
certain joint sealants that require a specific joint shape the top lift is approximately 20 percent. Constructing a
for proper performance. This is most commonly per- concrete pavement in this manner allows for the use of
formed by wet sawing with stacked diamond blades different mixture designs for the bottom lift and top lift.
that create a joint reservoir from 38 in. to in. wide
and 1 in. to 1 in. deep. Two-lift pavements can be constructed with conven-
tional paving equipment, although an additional belt
Common joint sealant materials used for concrete pav- placer/spreader and an additional paver is required. It
ing include bituminous (hot poured or cold poured), is possible to offset these additional labor and equip-
silicone (tooled or self-leveling), and pre-formed com- ment costs by economizing the mixture design used for
pression seals. the lower lift.

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION 45

Two-lift pavements offer opportunities to improve the (Harrington et al. 2010). RCC contains no reinforcing
sustainability of concrete pavements in the following steel, reducing both the economic and environmental
ways: impacts from the use of steel reinforcement. In certain
geographic areas that have an abundance of natural
Utilization of recycled pavement materials in the
sands and a shortage of quality coarse aggregates,
lower lift
higher aggregate content makes RCC a sustainable
Increased use of supplementary cementitious mate- solution for low-speed applications (industrial lots,
rials in the lower lift streets, and local roads). RCC can also be opened to
light traffic earlier than conventional concrete pave-
Long-term performance enhancements associated
ment, resulting in less disruption to the traveling public.
with an ultra-durable wearing surface

Roller-Compacted Concrete 4. References

Roller-compacted concrete (RCC) is constructed using American Concrete Pavement Association. 2008.
equipment similar to that used in the asphalt pavement Concrete Pavement Field Reference: Pre-Paving.
construction industry (Figure 5.14). The mixture is Report EB237P. Chicago, IL.
placed with a heavy-duty paver and compacted with
a vibratory steel wheel and pneumatic rollers. RCC Cable, J. 2004.
mixtures utilize a greater amount of fine aggregate paving/cable-062707.pdf
particles and reduced cementitious and water contents Harrington, D., Abdo, F., et al. 2010. Guide for Roller-
Compacted Concrete Pavements. Ames, IA. National
Concrete Pavement Technology Center.

Rasmussen, R.O., Garber, S.I, Fick, G.J., Ferragut, T.R.,

Wiegand, P.D, 2008. How to Reduce Tire-Pavement
Noise: Interim Better Practices for Constructing and
Texturing Concrete Pavement Surfaces. Ames, IA.
National Concrete Pavement Technology Center.

Taylor, P.C., S. Kosmatka, G. Voigt, et al. 2006.

Integrated Materials and Construction Practices for
Concrete Pavement: A State-of-the-Practice Manual.
Report FHWA HIF-07-004. Washington, D.C.: FHWA.
Figure 5.12 Top lift being placed on the bottom lift
(photo courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity Construction
Management, Inc.)

Figure 5.13 Two-lift paving on I-70 in Kansas

(photo courtesy of Gary Fick, Trinity Construction
Management, Inc.) Figure 5.14 RCC placement (Harrington et al. 2010)

46 Ch. 5. CONSTRUCTION Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Chapter 6

Martha VanGeem
Emily Lorenz
Tom Van Dam

As discussed in previous chapters, to obtain a full effect on environmental impact over the life cycle, con-
measure of the environmental impact of a concrete sidering such factors as vehicle fuel efficiency as well
pavement, all phases of the pavements life cycle must as how the pavement interacts with the environment
be considered. Although considerable attention has while in service (Wathne 2010, Santero et al. 2011a).
been paid to the material acquisition and construc-
tion phases, and to a lesser degree the end-of-life This chapter briefly considers both aspects. Traffic-
phase, until recently little attention has been paid to related factors such as vehicle rolling resistance, which
the impact of pavement type during the use phase. is influenced by pavement roughness and stiffness,
Yet it is recognized that the use phase, particularly the are discussed, as is pavement-environment interaction
traffic using the facility, often has the largest impact on including carbonation, lighting requirements, albedo,
the environment (Wathne 2010). As a result, increas- and leachate. The latter are discussed in greater detail
ing emphasis is being placed on whether differences in Chapter 9, as they are primarily a consideration in
resulting from pavement type may have a significant urban environments.
1. Vehicle Fuel Consumption and maintain a pavement surface that will minimize
the economic and environmental impact of vehicle
Unlike buildings that have electricity and other
energy-related metrics directly attributed to their
use, the energy and associated environmental impact The rolling resistance, which is the vehicle energy loss
attributed to the use of pavements are more difficult associated with pavement-vehicle interaction, has to be
to account. Although some of the energy used in the minimized for agencies to improve the fuel efficiency
operation of a pavement may be directly accounted of vehicles operating on their pavements (Santero et
for (e.g., energy to power artificial lighting), the big- al. 2011b). One of the biggest factors contributing
gest source of energy consumed during the use phase to rolling resistance is road roughness, as it results in
is overwhelmingly the fuel consumption of vehicles an excitation of the suspension systems in vehicles,
using the roadway. The consumption of fossil fuels has consuming energy that is responsible for significant
the greatest environmental impact during the pave- increases in fuel consumption (AASHTO 2009). This
ment life cycle, due in part to the emission of GHGs, has been a key input into the World Banks pavement
but also many other environmentally harmful impacts design model for decades (Chesher and Harrison
as shown in Figure 6.1. 1987, Bennett and Greenwood 2003), and recent
studies have confirmed the validity of this conclusion
Vehicle fuel consumption depends on many things
(Zabaar 2010). Specifically, it was found that regard-
such as wind resistance, vehicle type and load, tire
less of pavement or vehicle type, increasing pavement
type and pressure, vehicle speed and acceleration, and
roughness results in significantly higher fuel consump-
the interaction between the vehicle and the pavement
tion regardless of vehicle speed. This clearly demon-
surface, which includes pavement roughness (often
strates the benefit of constructing smooth pavements
measured using the international roughness index or
and keeping them smooth over their service life.
IRI), surface texture, and stiffness, among other fac-
tors. Many of these factors are the same regardless of Further, increasing pavement texture (as measured
pavement type. Pavement roughness, surface texture, by the sand patch test) results in significant increases
and stiffness, however, are inherent features of the in fuel consumption at lower vehicle speeds (Zaabar
pavement and thus can be controlled by the manag- 2010). Sandberg (1990) had previously observed this
ing agency, which has the ability to design, construct, trend, finding that at higher speeds, rolling resistance
is less dependent on pavement surface texture because
vehicle fuel consumption is more heavily influenced
by air resistance.

These conclusions, which are consistent with previous

work conducted on vehicle operating costs, support
the need to construct smooth, safe, and quiet concrete
pavements and employ maintenance and preserva-
tion strategies over the service life that will keep them
smooth, safe, and quiet. This enhances fuel efficiency
and reduces environmental impact; it will also reduce
the social cost of pavements by reducing crashes
(Tighe et al. 2000). As is described in Chapter 7, the
timely application of preventive maintenance treat-
ments, including the use of diamond surface grind-
ing, is a key strategy to keep good pavements in good
condition, enhancing sustainability over the life cycle.
Figure 6.1 Ecoprofile of different life-cycle phases
from a typical road (Wathne 2010 based on EAPA In addition to pavement roughness and texture,
2004) a number of field studies have been performed to

48 Ch. 6. IMPACT OF THE USE PHASE Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
determine if rolling resistance is affected by pavement consumption of only 1 or 2 percent can have a huge
properties (Zaniewski et al. 1982, De Graaff 1999, economic and environmental impact over the design
NPC 2002, Taylor and Patten 2006, Ardekani and life and should be incorporated into a life-cycle assess-
Sumitsawan 2010, Zaabar and Chatti 2011). Higher ment model as discussed in Chapter 8.
pavement deflections may result in additional fuel
consumption as a vehicle moves along the pavement In summary, it is clear that vehicular operations are
surface (Akbarian 2011). responsible for most of the energy consumed and
emissions generated over a pavements life cycle.
It is clear from past studies that no overwhelming Although many factors contributing to fuel consump-
consensus has emerged from various field studies con- tion are not related to the interaction between the tire
ducted to determine whether pavement type impacts and pavement, the pavement roughness, texture, and
fuel consumption, although it appears that pavement stiffness contribute to the rolling resistance. A con-
type can make a difference, with slightly better fuel crete pavement that is constructed and maintained in
efficiency observed for vehicles operating on concrete a smooth condition will thus reduce rolling resistance
pavements (Santero et al. 2011c). From this review, it and increase fuel efficiency of vehicles operating on
is clear that the study of fuel consumption is compli- it, thus reducing energy use and emissions. Further,
cated by many, many factors, and those field studies the inherent stiffness of concrete appears to result
that have taken this into account have found that pave- in reduced fuel consumption, especially for heavy
ment type effects are most prevalent for heavier, slow- vehicles operating at slow speeds during the warmer
moving vehicles during warm weather. As an example, months of the year. Mechanistic models are under
Zaabar and Chatti (2011) reported that pavement type development that will properly consider vehicular roll-
has a statistically significant impact on fuel efficiency ing resistance and its impact on fuel consumption for
for light (loaded) trucks and heavy trucks moving at use in life-cycle assessment.
low speeds (35 mph) under summer conditions, with
increased fuel consumption occurring on asphalt-sur-
faced pavements. The results were statistically insignifi-
2. Other Environmental Impacts
cant at higher speeds for all vehicles, and for passenger During Use
cars, vans, and SUVs under all conditions. It is noted In addition to environmental impact incurred due to
that data were not available for heavy trucks under vehicular use, other environmental factors warrant
winter conditions. consideration, including solar reflectance, lighting,
carbonation, run-off, and traffic delays. Santero et
These results make sense from an intuitive perspec- al. (2011a) note that these factors are the least con-
tive since a viscoelastic material such as asphalt will sistently considered in the environmental life-cycle
stiffen as it cools and/or is subjected to a higher rate assessment of pavements, yet in combination they can
of loading. As the surface stiffens, deflection decreases have a significant environmental impact. Most of these
and rolling resistance is reduced. Work conducted at factors are addressed in greater detail in other chap-
the Massachusetts Institute of Technology resulted in ters, but they are mentioned here since they affect a
a first-order mechanistic model to simulate the effect pavement in service.
of pavement stiffness on rolling resistance and to
accurately calculate the rate of fuel consumption for
different vehicle types for pavements of various stiff- Solar Reflectance
ness (Akbarian 2011). Preliminary results suggest that Solar reflectance (or albedo) is a surface property of a
pavement stiffness does make a small but significant material. Solar reflectance values range from zero to
difference, with lower fuel consumption incurred 1.0, with a zero value indicating a perfectly non-reflec-
for all vehicle types operating on stiffer pavements. tive material and a 1.0 value representing a material
The continued development of this type of model is that is 100 percent reflective. Light-colored materials
justified, as the volume of traffic over the life of many have higher solar reflectance values than dark-colored
pavements is so great that even a difference in fuel materials. Although color plays a role in a materials

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 6. IMPACT OF THE USE PHASE 49
solar reflectance, color alone is not the only indicator cement or coatings, further mitigating the urban heat
of solar reflectance. island effect. Titanium dioxide photocatalyic coatings
have the added benefit of breaking down the harmful
Solar reflectance has the greatest importance in urban compounds of nitrogen oxides (NOx) (Chen and Poon
areas as it is known to contribute to the formation 2009). And, because of evaporative cooling, the use
of urban heat islands. A heat island is a local area of of a light-colored pervious concrete pavement can be
elevated temperature located in a region of cooler tem- extremely effective in addressing the urban heat island
peratures. Heat islands usually occur in urban areas while also addressing surface run-off. Further discus-
as illustrated in Figure 6.2; hence, they are sometimes sion on this topic can be found in Chapter 9.
called urban heat islands. Urban heat islands are
formed due to the warming of exposed urban surfaces Further, the use of reflective surfaces, including the
such as roofs and pavements (EPA 2009). Urban heat use of reflective pavements and roofs in both urban
islands contribute to lower air and water quality and and rural areas, is being advocated by a group of
greater energy demands, especially in the summer. researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Labora-
tory. This is not being recommended for mitigation of
In places that are already burdened with high tempera- the urban heat island effect alone, but as a strategy to
tures, the heat-island effect can make cities warmer, combat global warming through radiative forcing of
more uncomfortable, and occasionally more life-threat- the suns energy back into space (Akbari and Menon
ening (FEMA 2007). Temperatures greater than 75F 2008). The basic theory is that when the suns energy
increase the probability of formation of ground-level is reflected back into space, it is not being absorbed
ozone (commonly called smog), which exacerbates into the earths surface and thus cannot contribute
respiratory conditions such as asthma. Higher tem- to warming of the planet. Research continues into
peratures also lead to greater reliance on air condition- the impact of radiative forcing on mitigating global
ing, which leads to more energy use and associated warming, but findings to date indicate that this could
emissions. be an enormously important factor in reducing global
Due to its naturally light color, concrete is an excellent temperatures in the future.
choice for paving material in an urban environment.
This is illustrated in Figure 6.3, which shows the Lighting
impact of pavement albedo on surface temperature,
with darker surfaces having much higher tempera- Concretes higher (brighter) reflectance can also
tures. Further, reflectance can be enhanced by the use lower infrastructure and ongoing lighting costs, while
of some SCMs, such as light-colored slag cement and/ boosting safety for vehicles and pedestrians. Concrete
or fly ash. Highly reflective pavement surfaces can be
created using white titanium dioxide photocatalytic

Figure 6.2 Heat islands for various areas of Figure 6.3 Effect of pavement type and albedo on
development (EPA 2003) pavement surface temperature (Kaloush 2010)

50 Ch. 6. IMPACT OF THE USE PHASE Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
pavements require fewer lighting fixtures than other As is discussed in Chapter 8, significant additional
surfaces and less energy is required to achieve the amounts of CO2 can be absorbed through carbon-
same degree of lighting (Gajda and VanGeem 2001). ation at the end of a pavements life, particularly if it is
Improved illumination leads to increased visibility, crushed as part of a recycling operation.
which is an important safety consideration. This is also
discussed in more detail in Chapter 9.
Run-Off and Leachate
After a rainstorm, run-off from the pavement surface
Carbonation can carry pollutants with it, most of which originated
Carbonation is a normal phenomenon that occurs from vehicles that used the pavement and not from the
between hydrated cement phases in concrete and pavement material itself (Santero et al. 2011b). The
atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), where the phases use of a pervious concrete surface (currently applicable
react with the CO2, absorbing some of it into the for low traffic volume pavements, parking areas, and
exposed surfaces. By reabsorbing atmospheric CO2, shoulders) can help mitigate some of this effect by
concrete pavements can partially offset their environ- preventing most surface run-off from directly entering
mental impact of CO2 generation that occurs during streams and lakes (Borst et al. 2010). Instead, natural
the manufacture of cement. Gajda (2001) gathered processes degrade the pollutants as the water slowly
data on the amount of CO2 that could be absorbed by passes through aggregate and soil. Further, pervious
concrete based on more than 1,000 samples. Figure concrete surfaces will prevent run-off warmed by a hot
6.4 shows one sample that has carbonated to a depth pavement surface from rapidly entering surface waters,
of 18 mm. Carbonation rates varied depending on the thus helping to maintain a cool water temperature
strength of the concrete and cement content, but the which is necessary for some species survival. As pervi-
average rate of carbonation for uncoated concrete was ous concrete is most often used in urban areas, Chap-
found to be 4.23 mm/yr0.5. He further estimated that, ter 9 includes a more detailed discussion on this topic.
on average, concrete produced in the United States
could absorb about 274,000 metric tons of atmo- Santero et al. (2011b) also noted that research has
spheric CO2 in the first year after placement. Although been inconclusive related to run-off or leachates from
the rate of carbonation will slow with time, it is impor- recycled materials. It is known that when concrete is
tant to know that a measurable amount of CO2 will be recycled and stockpiled, run-off from the stockpiles
sequestered by a concrete pavement while in service. initially has a pH of 9 or 10, but the pH diminishes
within weeks as exposed cement grains and soluble
cement paste phases react (ACPA 2009). Additional
discussion on the use of recycled concrete is presented
in Chapter 8.

Traffic Delays
Traffic delays incurred during pavement maintenance
and rehabilitation (see Figure 6.5) greatly influence
vehicle fuel consumption. Santero et al. (2011a)
hypothesize that traffic delays could be a much greater
portion of a pavements environmental impact than
construction materials and equipment. As a result, it
is recognized that the environmental impacts of traffic
delay resulting from future maintenance and rehabili-
Figure 6.4 Depth of carbonation determined by the tation activities should be included in the environmen-
phenolphthalein test (pink two-thirds of the sample tal assessment, and work continues to characterize this
is not carbonated (Gajda 2001) impact (Santero et al. 2011c). The inclusion of this

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 6. IMPACT OF THE USE PHASE 51
impact would further demonstrate the environmental better characterize the environmental impacts that are
savings that can be incurred through long-life pave- incurred through the use phase and to determine how
ments that have little need for future lane closure in these can more easily be included in environmental
support of maintenance/rehabilitation activities. life-cycle assessment. Indications are that the use phase
has the greatest impact of all life-cycle phases and thus
must be considered in sustainable design.
3. Summary
Studies have recognized the importance of consider-
ing the use phase in sustainable design, yet often it 4. References
is largely ignored. Pavement designers, contractors, American Association of State Highway and Transpor-
and owners may not have influence on the types of tation Officials (AASHTO). 2009. Rough Roads Ahead-
vehicles that use pavements. However, with proper Fix Them Now or Pay for It Later. Washington, D.C.:
consideration during design and construction and AASHTO (
the adoption of an aggressive concrete preservation Roads_FullReport.pdf; accessed on August 8, 2011)
strategy, concrete pavements can be constructed and
maintained in a smooth condition, reducing fuel American Concrete Pavement Association (ACPA).
consumption and related emissions. Over the life 2009. Recycling Concrete Pavements. Engineering Bul-
cycle, small improvements in fuel efficiency incurred letin 043P. Skokie, IL: ACPA.
due to the inherent stiffness of concrete pavements Akbari, H., and S. Menon. 2008. Global Cooling:
may significantly reduce the environmental impact Increasing World-wide Urban Albedos to Offset
of pavements. Further, the relatively high reflectiv- CO2. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Arthur
ity of concrete will help reduce the heat island effect, Rosenfeld California Energy Commission. Pavement
reduce the energy needed for artificial illumination, Interactive. (
and through radiative forcing reduce global warming, php?title=Global_Cooling:_Increasing_World-wide_
further enhancing environmental performance during Urban_Albedos_to_Offset_CO2; accessed August 8,
the use phase. Other factors that should be considered 2011)
include carbonation, run-off and leachate generation,
and traffic delays incurred during future maintenance Akbarian, M. 2011. When the Rubber Meets the Road.
and rehabilitation activities. Work is under way to Life Cycle Analysis Research Brief. Cambridge, MA:
Concrete Sustainability Hub, Massachusetts Institute of

Ardekani, S., and P. Sumitsawan. 2010. Effect of

Pavement Type on Fuel Consumption and Emissions
in City Driving. Concrete Sustainability Conference.
National Ready Mixed Concrete Association.

Bennett, C.R., and I.D. Greenwood. 2003. Vol-

ume 7: Modeling Road User and Environmental
Effects in HDM-4. Version 3.0, International Study
of Highway Development and Management Tools
(ISOHDM). World Road Association (PIARC). ISBN:

Borst, M., A. Rowe, E. Stander, and T. OConnor.

2010. Surface Infiltration Rates of Permeable Surfaces:
Figure 6.5 Traffic delays caused by construction Six Month Update (November 2009 through April
(photo courtesy of Jim Cable, FHWA) 2010). EPA/600/R-10/083. Washington, D.C.: U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency.

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Chatti, K. 2010. Effect of Pavement Conditions on Kaloush, Kamil. 2010. Pavements and the Urban Heat
Rolling Resistance and Fuel Consumption. Presen- Island Effect. Presentation made on EPAs Cool Pave-
tation made at the Pavement Life Cycle Assessment ments Webcast. Arizona State University.
Workshop, University of CaliforniaDavis.
Lenngren, C.A., and L. Faldner. 2011. Fuel Cost Con-
Chen, J., and C. Poon. 2009. Photocatalytic Construc- sideration Regarding Truck Rolling Resistance on Dif-
tion and Building Materials: From Fundamentals to ferent Pavement Types. Swedish Road and Transport
Applications. Building and Environment, 44:9. Research Institute, Vermont Transportation Institute.

Chesher, A., and R. Harrison. 1987. Vehicle Operating Netherlands Pavement Consultants (NPC). 2002.
Cost: Evidence from Developing Countries. Washing- VEROAD Calculations: Maximum Energy Dissipa-
ton, D.C.: World Bank Publications. tion When Driving on Asphalt Pavement versus Driv-
ing on Rigid Cement Concrete. Netherlands: NPC.
De Graaff. 1999. Dutch report: Rolling resistance
of Porous Asphalt-a Pilot Study. Report no. M+P. Sandberg, Ulf S. I. 1990. Road Macro- and Mega-
MVM.97.2.1 rev. 2 M+P. The Netherlands. Texture Influence on Fuel Consumption. ASTM STP
1031. West Conshochocken, PA.
European Asphalt Pavement Association (EAPA). 2004.
Environmental Impact and Fuel Efficiency of Roads. Santero, N.J., E. Masanet, and A. Horvath. 2011a.
Industry Report. EAPA/Eurobitume. ( Life-Cycle Assessment of Pavements. Part 1: Criti-
usr_img/position_paper/fuel_efficiency_report.pdf, cal Review. Resour Conserv Recy. doi:10.1016/j.
accessed August 8, 2011) resonrec.2011.03.010.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 2003. Santero, N.J., E. Masanet, and A. Horvath. 2011b.
Cooling Summertime Temperatures: Strategies to Life-Cycle Assessment of Pavements. Part 2: Fill-
Reduce Urban Heat Islands. Washington, D.C.: U.S. ing the Research Gaps. Resour Conserv Recy.
EPA. ( doi:10.1016/j.resonrec.2011.03.009.
chure.pdf; accessed August 8, 2011)
Santero, N., A. Loijos, M. Akbarian, and J. Ochsen-
EPA. 2009. Reducing Urban Heat Islands: Compen- dorf. 2011c. Methods, Impacts, and Opportunities
dium of StrategiesCool Pavements. Draft. Wash- in the Concrete Pavement Life Cycle. Draft Report.
ington, D.C.: U.S. EPA. ( Cambridge, MA: Concrete Sustainability Hub, Massa-
resources/pdf/CoolPavesCompendium.pdf; accessed chusetts Institute of Technology.
August 8, 2011)
Sumitsawan, P., S. Romanoschi, and S.A. Ardekani.
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). 2009. Effect of Pavement Type on Fuel Consumption
2007. Are You Ready? Extreme Heat. Washington, and Emissions. Proceedings of the 2009 Mid-Conti-
D.C.: FEMA. (; nent Transportation Research Symposium. Ames, IA:
accessed July 5, 2011) Institute for Transportation, Iowa State University.

Gajda, John. 2001. Absorption of Atmospheric Carbon Taylor, G.W., and J.D. Patten. 2006. Effect of Pave-
Dioxide by Portland Cement Concrete, R&D Serial No. ment Structure on Vehicle Fuel ConsumptionPhase
2255a, Skokie, IL: Portland Cement Association. III. Technical Report CSTT-HVC-TR-068. Skokie, IL:
Portland Cement Association.
Gajda, J., and M. VanGeem. 2001. A Comparison of
Six Environmental Impacts of Portland Cement Con- Tighe, S., N. Li, L. Cowe Falls, and R. Haas. 2000.
crete and Asphalt Cement Concrete Pavements. PCA Incorporating Road Safety into Pavement Manage-
R&D Serial No. 2068. Skokie, IL: Portland Cement ment. Journal of the Transportation Research Board.
Association. TRR 1699. Washington, D.C.: Transportation Research

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 6. IMPACT OF THE USE PHASE 53
Wathne, L. 2010. Sustainability Opportunities With Zaabar, I., and K. Chatti. 2011. A Field Investigation
Pavements: Are We Focusing on the Right Stuff. of the Effect of Pavement Type on Fuel Consumption.
Proceedings: International Conference on Sustainable In the Proceedings of the 90th Annual Meeting of the
Concrete Pavements: Practices, Challenges, and Direc- Transportation Research Board. Washington, D.C.:
tions. Sacramento, CA. TRB.

Zaabar, I. 2010. Effect of Pavement Conditions on Zaniewski, J.P., B.C. Butler, G.E. Cunningham, G.E.
Vehicle Operating Costs Including Fuel Consumption, Elkins, M.S. Paggi, and R. Machemehl. 1982. Vehicle
Vehicle Durability and Damage to Transported Goods. Operating Costs, Fuel Consumption, and Pavement
Ph.D. Dissertation. East Lansing, MI: Michigan State Type and Condition Factors. Washington, D.C.: Fed-
University. eral Highway Administration.

54 Ch. 6. IMPACT OF THE USE PHASE Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Chapter 7

Tom Van Dam

Preservation and rehabilitation play an important role This chapter briefly discusses renewal strategies that can
in ensuring pavement longevity while maintaining be applied to concrete pavements to effectively main-
the highest level of serviceability. Long-lasting pave- tain serviceability over the design life. The two primary
ments reduce future investments in new materials and strategies that are discussed are preventive maintenance
construction, thus minimizing economic, environ- and rehabilitation. Preventive maintenance is a planned
mental, and social impact over the life cycle. Further, strategy employing treatments that extend pavement
a well maintained concrete pavement will remain in a life, generally without increasing structural capacity.
smooth, safe, and quiet condition for a greater portion Pavement rehabilitation adds some structural capacity,
of its life, thus increasing the fuel efficiency of vehicles usually through the application of additional pavement
and reducing crashes that adversely impact the com- thickness in the form of an overlay. Timely and appro-
munity. As such, renewal directly contributes to the priate preventive maintenance and rehabilitation can
sustainability of the concrete pavement. enhance sustainability over the concrete pavement life
1. Pavement Renewal Concepts In some cases maintenance may be required on high
traffic lanes only, in which case detailing should avoid
Although many treatments and strategies are available
elevation differences between lanes. Pavement rehabili-
that contribute to concrete pavement renewal, they can
tation is appropriate after the pavement condition has
generally be classified under preventive maintenance
dropped to a point where it is no longer effective to
or rehabilitation. Preventive maintenance is a planned
apply preventive maintenance. As can also be seen in
strategy employing cost-effective treatments (e.g.,
Figure 7.1, after the pavement condition has dropped
patching, joint sealing, diamond grinding, and so on)
to a certain levelthe pavement life is basically used
that extend pavement life without increasing structural
upthe only suitable treatment is reconstruction.
capacity (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008). Unlike
preventive maintenance, pavement rehabilitation adds Figure 7.2 illustrates the monetary impact of treat-
some structural capacity, usually through the applica- ments applied at various pavement condition levels,
tion of additional pavement thickness in the form of an as represented by a generalized pavement condition
overlay (Harrington et al. 2008). rating (PCR). It shows that $1.00 spent to maintain a
good pavement (PCR 60 to 100) in good condition is
Figure 7.1 graphically illustrates a typical pavement
equivalent to spending $4.80 to $7.00 on a pavement
life, with pavement condition (e.g., level of distress,
having a PCR of 50 to 60. This cost jumps to $20.00
roughness, structural capacity, and so on) plotted on
at a PCR of 40 to 50, and to $48.00 at a PCR less
the vertical axis and time (or traffic) plotted on the
than 40, illustrating the cost effectiveness of properly
horizontal axis. The curved line represents pavement
applied preventive maintenance treatments.
performance over time, showing initially that pave-
ment condition slightly decreases with time as the The effects of preventive maintenance and rehabilita-
pavement ages and is subjected to traffic. After the ini- tion are illustrated in Figure 7.3. As can be seen, each
tial phase of the pavement life, performance decreases application of a preventive maintenance treatment pro-
at an increasing rate before finally leveling off once it vides a small increase in condition, often translating to
has reached a poor condition. increased smoothness. Thus, the application of timely
and appropriate preventive maintenance treatments
Figure 7.1 also shows typical windows in which
will keep a smooth pavement smooth for an extended
preventive maintenance and rehabilitation are appli-
period of time. This is not only cost effective for the
cable. As can be seen, preventive maintenance is only
agency responsible for maintaining the pavement but,
applicable when the pavement is in relatively good
as discussed in Chapter 6, it also reduces the vehicle
condition and has significant remaining life. Thus,
operating costs as well as the environmental impact of
a common precept is that preventive maintenance
vehicles operating on the pavement.
is used to keep good pavements in good condition.

Good Pavement Preservation Window
Pavement Condition

Reconstruction 60-100 Each $1.00 spent at PCR 60-100


Costs $4.80 to $7.00 at PCR 50-60

40-50 Costs $20.00 at PCR 40-50
Maintenance 0-40 Costs $48.00 at PCR 0-40
10 15 20
Figure 7.1 Typical pavement performance Years (age)

curve showing ideal times for the application Figure 7.2 Comparison of treatment costs at
of pavement preservation, rehabilitation, and different pavement condition ratings (PCRs)
reconstruction (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008) (Zimmerman and Wolters 2003)

56 Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

At some point, preventive maintenance alone may be over-design. For example, a recent study of economic
incapable of maintaining the pavement in a smooth and environmental life-cycle performance of concrete
condition indefinitely, and therefore the application of pavements found that when the life of a rehabilitation
a rehabilitation treatment is needed to restore struc- treatment was not fully utilized, it resulted in signifi-
tural capacity. This is illustrated in Figure 7.3, where a cant environmental cost (Van Dam et al. 2011). Thus,
large improvement in condition is realized through the the first step in any preventive maintenance/rehabilita-
application of the rehabilitation treatment. However, tion project is an evaluation of the existing conditions.
the underlying condition of the original pavement A typical concrete pavement evaluation will consist
affects the life of the rehabilitation; thus, after reha- of the following steps (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin
bilitation, pavement condition may decrease at a faster 2008):
rate than it does for a newly constructed pavement.
1. Review of historical data and records This should
In summary, the concept of concrete pavement include a review of design reports, construction
renewal requires that preventive maintenance and plans and records, materials and soils proper-
rehabilitation techniques be employed, using the right ties, past performance and maintenance records,
treatment at the right time. To be cost effective while past and anticipated future traffic, and climatic
reducing life-cycle environmental impact, preventive conditions.
maintenance treatments are applied to pavements in
generally good condition, keeping them smooth while 2. Initial site visit and assessment This consists of an
extending life. Over time, the structural capacity of initial visit to assess general conditions and help
most pavements will need to be restored or increased, scope the future evaluation and includes general
at which juncture the use of pavement rehabilitation distress observations, an assessment of roughness,
techniques will be the best approach. particularly sags and swells, and observation of
moisture problems.

2. Pavement Evaluation 3. Field testing activities These may include detailed

distress and drainage surveys, nondestructive
Overview deflection testing, roughness and friction testing,
Determining the right time and the right strategy and field sampling and testing.
(maintenance or rehabilitation) requires a thorough
pavement evaluation (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 4. Laboratory materials characterization This may
2008). Not understanding the pavement condition can include determining the strength and stiffness of
result in the application of an inappropriate treatment concrete and bound layers, petrographic analysis of
and, consequently, either an early failure or wasteful concrete, density, and gradation analysis. The focus
is on using the data to determine the overall pave-
ment condition, focusing on causative effects and
Good Preventive Rehabilitation
uniformity over the project length.
Upon completion of the evaluation, a determination
Pavement Condition

will be made whether the pavement is in good condi-

tion, as defined by the owner, and possesses adequate
structural capacity to be suitable for preventive main-
tenance, or whether the conditions are such that
structural improvement is required through the use of
rehabilitation. It is important to note that, if the pave-
Poor ment is deteriorating due to a materials-related distress
Time (MRD) mechanism, such as alkali-silica reactivity or
Figure 7.3 Illustration of typical impacts of freeze-thaw damage, it may not be a good candidate
preventive maintenance and rehabilitation on for preventive maintenance strategies that do not
concrete pavement condition (Smith, Hoerner, and address the underlying distress mechanism.
Peshkin 2008)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL 57

The following sections will discuss preventive mainte- is often a contributing factor, as joint displacement
nance and rehabilitation treatments, and how their use can pinch the concrete at the surface and dislodge
results in increased sustainability over the life cycle. concrete weakened by other factors.

The conventional repair sequence includes the follow-

3. Preventive Maintenance ing (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008):
Treatments 1. Repair boundaries are determined, ensuring that all
Concrete pavement preservation treatments include the deteriorated/delaminated concrete is identified
the following (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008): for removal.

Slab stabilization 2. Concrete is removed using partial-depth saw cuts

to define repair boundaries and light-weight jack
Partial-depth repair hammers to carefully remove the concrete from
Full-depth repair repair area.

Use of precast panels in full-depth repairs 3. Repair area is prepared by final removal of loose
material and cleaned using sand-blasting and
Retrofitted edge drains air-blasting.
Load transfer restoration 4. Joint is prepared, including insertion of a com-
pressible material into the joint to prevent intru-
Diamond grinding and grooving
sion of the repair material.
Joint resealing and crack sealing
5. For some repair materials, bonding grout/agent
Not all projects will include all treatments. The most must be applied immediately prior to placement of
common treatments that address ride quality are par- the repair material.
tial- and full-depth repairs, load transfer restoration, 6. The patch material is placed in accordance with
and diamond grinding. These are discussed below. manufacturers instructions.
Cross stitching may be conducted on newer pavements
that have early-age cracks (ACPA 2006). When thin 7. The patch is cured for the specified time, often
bonded concrete overlays are constructed primarily to using a white pigmented membrane curing
restore ride quality rather than add structural capac- compound. Blankets may be required in cooler
ity, they may be considered as preventive maintenance weather.
projects; overlays are described in detail under the
A recent publication discusses how concrete removal
Rehabilitation section of this chapter. can be conducted quite efficiently using modern mill-
ing machines in which rotating carbide teeth grind
Partial-Depth Repair away the existing concrete to the desired depth, leav-
ing a rough substrate that facilitates bonding of the
Partial-depth repairs are used to repair surface distress
repair material (Harrington et al. 2011). See Figure
that is isolated in the top one-third of the slab, restor-
7.4. This technique has been used successfully in a
ing ride quality and allowing for effective sealing of
number of states, creating cost-effective, long-lasting
joints (Frentress and Harrington 2011). This type of
distress is often found in the vicinity of joints and is
most often caused by the infiltration of incompress- Several materials are available for partial-depth repairs,
ible material into the joint that results in spalling as with the choice being driven by the desired time to
the joint closes during warmer weather. Poor concrete opening. Long-lasting, durable repairs have been cre-
consolidation, localized areas of weak concrete, cor- ated using portland cement-based products, although
rosion of reinforcing steel, and the use of joint inserts if the required time to opening is less than 12 hours,
also contribute to the formation of surface distress that often proprietary cementitious- or polymeric-based
can be addressed through partial-depth repairs. Traffic materials are used (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008,

58 Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Harrington et al. 2011). The selection of the repair 3. Concrete is removed in a way that minimizes
material is based on multiple factors that are assessed disruption to adjacent concrete and the underly-
as part of operations and maintenance. ing base. The lift-out method, in which lift pins
are attached through drilled holes, has been found
to be most effective, although other methods have
Full-Depth Repair
also been successful.
Full-depth repairs, including full slab replacements,
are used to repair various types of structural distress 4. The repair area is prepared by removal of loose
including transverse cracking, corner breaks, longi- material, replacing it with compacted materials of
tudinal cracking, severely deteriorated joints (distress similar properties or with concrete. As compaction
extends deeper than one-third the slab depth), blow- within the confined repair area is difficult, replace-
ups, and punch-outs. These distresses compromise ment with concrete is often the best approach.
the structural integrity of the pavement system, and
5. Load transfer at the transverse edges of the repair
the use of full-depth repairs restores the lost capacity
is restored through the use of steel dowels, which
while improving ride quality. If the distress is present
are grouted into holes created using gang-mounted
through a large percentage of the project, full-depth
repairs may not be cost effective. Instead, a structural
rehabilitation using an overlay might be more effective 6. Concrete is placed and finished in accordance with
and potentially result in a more sustainable solution appropriate specifications. Typically conventional
(Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008). concrete can be used, although often a high-early
or even a very high-early strength mixture can
Full-depth repairs of jointed concrete pavement are
be selected. In general, it is best to use acceler-
accomplished according to the following steps:
ated strength gain mixtures only if the constraints
1. Repair boundaries are identified, ensuring that the of the project dictate that early opening to traffic
entire potential extent of deterioration is incorpo- is required, as the economic and environmental
rated. Figure 7.5 illustrates that often the distress impact of the repair material can be increased if
at the bottom of the slab extends beyond what is early strength gain is specified. Use of recycled
visible at the surface, and the effectiveness of the materials may help to balance this negative impact.
repair is dependent on the complete removal of
7. Curing is typically accomplished using a white
deteriorated concrete.
pigmented curing compound. Blankets may be
2. The concrete is sawed the full depth of the slab, required in cooler weather and/or if accelerated
ensuring a smooth face for restoration of load strength gain is desired.
transfer devices. Multiple saw cuts may be used to
facilitate removal of the concrete.
Visual deterioration of surface

Dowel bar

Potential deterioration at bottom of slab

Figure 7.5 Illustration of distress extent, with distress
Figure 7.4 Damaged material has been milled out at the bottom of the slab extending beyond that
in a partial-depth repair (photo courtesy of Dale observed at the surface (Smith, Hoerner, and
Harrington, Snyder and Associates) Peshkin 2008)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL 59

Full-depth repairs are used when deterioration extends joint is then caulked to prevent intrusion of repair
beyond one-third the slab depth and safety and ride material
quality are compromised. Well constructed full-depth
3. A dowel bar is placed in each slot. The dowel bar
repairs should last for the life of the concrete pave-
is typically on a chair, coated with a bond breaker
ment, effectively restoring structural integrity and ride
and capped with an expansion cap on one or both
quality, and are thus an important treatment used to
ends. A compressible insert is located at the bar
maintain concrete pavements over the life cycle.
center to establish the joint in the repair. Figure 7.7
shows dowel bars adjacent to prepared slots, wait-
Load Transfer Restoration ing to be placed.
The restoration of load transfer is a technology that has 4. Repair material is placed in the slot according to
had a significant impact on improving the ride quality the manufacturers recommendations and consoli-
of concrete pavements throughout the United States. dated with a small, spud-type vibrator. The repair
It was not uncommon in the past to construct jointed is then finished and cured to minimize shrinkage.
plain concrete pavement (JPCP) without load transfer The repair material is critical to the success of this
devices, with the assumption that aggregate interlock treatment. Most materials that are suitable for par-
would be sufficient to maintain load transfer with tial-depth repair are suitable for this application.
shorter joint spacing. Unfortunately, it has been found
that JPCPs constructed without load transfer devices
are susceptible to joint faulting, resulting in poor ride
quality even though the pavement is otherwise sound.
Further, in some jointed concrete pavements with load
transfer devices, faulting has occurred as heavy traf-
fic has eventually degraded the ability of the joint to
transfer load. In either case, load transfer restoration
has provided an avenue to restore the ability of load
to be shared across a joint, minimizing deflection and
reducing cracking, thus positively affecting remaining
life. Once load transfer is restored, the primary mecha-
nism causing faulting is eliminated. Assuming drainage
is also addressed using edge drains, and that the slabs
have been restored to desired elevations, the pavement
can then be diamond ground to improve ride quality.
Load transfer restoration is illustrated in Figure 7.6. Figure 7.6 Schematic illustration of load transfer
restoration (ACPA 2006)
The current practice for restoring load transfer is as
follows (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008):

1. Slots for dowel bars are created using gang-

mounted saw blades mounted on specially
designed slot-cutting machines. Production rates
exceeding 2,500 slots per day are possible using
this method.

2. Each slot is prepared using a lightweight jack ham-

mer to carefully scalp the concrete from the slot
and then using a hammerhead to flatten the bot-
tom of the slot. The slot is then cleaned by sand- Figure 7.7 Dowel bars on chairs with end caps and
blasting and air-blasting to provide a surface with compressible inserts in place ready to be inserted
which the repair material can bond. The existing into prepared slots (IGGA 2010)

60 Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

With the advent of slot-cutting machines, which In general, pavements with faulting in excess of 0.125
ensure good productivity and quality, load transfer in., IRI roughness of 63 to 90 in./mi, or wheel path
restoration has become a popular operation to address wear up to 0.375 in. are good candidates for diamond
poor load transfer that is common in undoweled JPCPs grinding. More specifically, the following guidelines
and in older pavements in which load transfer has apply (Smith, Hoerner, and Peshkin 2008):
been lost. In combination with diamond grinding, load
transfer restoration can be used to effectively maintain Exceedingly rough pavements having an IRI in
excess of 190 in./mi may be too rough to be suc-
a concrete pavement in a smooth condition over its
cessfully ground in a cost-effective manner. In such
design life.
cases, rehabilitation through the use of an overlay
may be more appropriate (Correa and Wong 2001).
Diamond Grinding
Severe drainage problems must be addressed prior
Diamond grinding is applied to a concrete pavement to diamond grinding.
after partial- and full-depth repairs and load transfer
restoration, as well as slab stabilization and drain- Structural distress must be repaired prior to dia-
age retrofitting. Using gang-mounted, closely-spaced mond grinding.
diamond saw blades, diamond grinding uniformly
If load transfer efficiencies are below 60 percent,
removes a thin layer of concrete, restoring pavement
load transfer restoration must be completed prior to
ride quality while improving skid resistance. This
diamond grinding.
treatment removes faulting, wheel path wear, surface
irregularities, and polished surface texture, replacing The harder the aggregate, the more difficult and
them with a uniform surface that can be as smooth, expensive it is to grind. In some instances, it may
quiet, and safe as the originally constructed surface. be cost prohibitive to effectively grind a concrete
Figure 7.8 shows a close-up of a diamond ground made with extremely hard aggregates.
surface, showing how it is renewed without the need
to add any new material. If there is need for significant full-depth repair and
slab replacements, the structural life of the pave-
Diamond grinding has been in use for decades, having ment may be near its end and thus diamond grind-
been pioneered in California where it was first used ing would not be a good option.
in 1965. California continues to routinely apply this
technique, finding that a ground pavement will main- As with other preventive maintenance treatments,
tain its smoothness for 16 to 17 years before the need if the pavement is deteriorating due to a materials-
to regrind, with some projects receiving three succes- related distress (MRD) mechanism, such as alkali-
sive grindings over their design life in regions without silica reactivity or freeze-thaw damage, it may not
studded tires or chains (Stubstad et al. 2005). be a good candidate for diamond grinding.

As a treatment that can improve overall ride qual-

ity and skid resistance in a cost-effective manner,
diamond grinding has the potential to significantly
improve vehicle fuel efficiency and safety, thus contrib-
uting directly to improved sustainability. Also, there
have recently been efforts to remove asphalt overlays
from some concrete pavements that were overlaid
primarily to address ride quality issues (IGGA ND).
These pavements then undergo preventive mainte-
nance treatments and diamond grinding, returning
them into service as renewed concrete pavements. This
has the advantage of minimal future maintenance costs
Figure 7.8 Diamond ground surface after years of as well as increased reflectivity, thus lowering life-cycle
service (photo courtesy of The Transtec Group) environmental impact.

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL 61

Summary to successful use of a bonded concrete overlay are as
In summary, preventive maintenance plays a criti- follow (Harrington et al. 2008):
cal role in keeping good pavements in good condi- The existing substrate pavement surface must be
tion. Treatments such as partial- and full-depth repair thoroughly prepared and cleaned to enhance the
replace deteriorated concrete while restoring ride bond between it and the overlay.
quality and structural integrity of the pavement. Load
transfer restoration slows the progression of future The coefficient of thermal expansion of the overlay
faulting and, combined with diamond grinding which concrete must be similar to that in the substrate
eliminates existing faulting, results in the long-term concrete.
restoration of ride quality. Preventive maintenance
Working cracks in the existing pavement must be
is thus a cost effective, low-environmental impact
repaired, or the overlay should be sawed over them to
approach to reducing vehicle operating costs and asso-
prevent uncontrolled reflective cracking in the overlay.
ciated emissions over the pavement life cycle.
Existing joints must be in fair to good condition or
4. Rehabilitation
Joint sawing must be done promptly following con-
As defined by Harrington et al. (2008), pavement struction of the overlay.
rehabilitation through an overlay can be considered as
minor rehabilitation or major rehabilitation, differenti- Transverse joints in the overlay must be sawed full
ated primarily by the thickness of the overlay and the depth plus 0.5 in., whereas longitudinal joints must
degree to which structural capacity is increased. As be sawed to half the overlay thickness.
mentioned previously, thin bonded concrete overlays
Joints in the overlay must align with those in the
are constructed primarily to restore surface quality
underlying pavement.
and are generally considered to be preventive mainte-
nance projects. Bonded concrete overlays may also be The width of the transverse joints in the overlay must
considered minor rehabilitation in that they generally be the same or greater than the width of the crack in
add some structural capacity to pavements. Unbonded the transverse joints in the underlying pavement.
concrete overlays, which are generally 4in. thick or
more, comprise minor and major rehabilitation proj- Curing compound must be applied in a timely and
ects, involving structural enhancements that extend thorough fashion.
service life. As the name implies, a good bond between the overlay
Concrete overlays can be placed on existing concrete, and the existing substrate pavement must be achieved
asphalt, and composite pavements. This chapter, during construction and must be maintained during the
however, focuses on overlays of existing concrete life of the pavement, as the loss of bond will result in
pavements. Various pavement conditions for which premature failure of the overlay. Thus, great care must
different types of concrete overlays are appropriate are be exercised during construction to ensure that the
illustrated in Figure 7.9. substrate is properly prepared, that construction is done
as specified, that the joints are sawed promptly and to
the correct depth, and that curing is conducted expedi-
Bonded Concrete Overlays tiously and with care. The following is a summary of
In certain circumstances, a bonded concrete overlay the bonded concrete overlay process (Harrington et al.
provides a good treatment option to eliminate surface 2008):
defects (e.g., extensive scaling, poor aggregate fric- 1. Pavement evaluation The pavement should be
tion characteristics, and so on), infill a milled section, thoroughly evaluated to ensure that it is a good can-
and/or increase the structural capacity of an existing didate for a bonded concrete overlay. In general, it
concrete pavement, while meeting vertical clearance must be structurally sound, relatively free of distress,
requirements. In general, the existing concrete pave- and must not be suffering from an MRD.
ment must be in good structural condition. The keys

62 Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

2. Overlay design Bonded concrete overlays are typi- When well designed and constructed correctly, a
cally 2- to 5-in. thick, and thickness is commonly bonded overlay will extend the life of a concrete pave-
designed using the AASHTO (1993) Guide for ment for decades, providing a sustainable solution to
Design of Pavement Structures, although the use of correct specific problems in an existing structurally
the new AASHTO Darwin-ME design will continue sound concrete pavement. See Figure 7.10.
to grow in popularity. Conventional concrete mix-
tures have been successful in constructing bonded Table 7.1 Pre-Overlay Repair Recommendations for
concrete overlays. Joint design must match the Bonded Concrete Overlays (Harrington et al. 2008)
existing concrete pavement. Existing
Spot Repairs to Consider
Pavement Distress
3. Pre-overlay repair Pre-overlay repair is essential Reflective cracking is likely if no
Random cracks repairs are made; use crack cages or
for the successful performance of bonded concrete full-depth repairs for severe cracks
overlays. Table 7-1 provides recommendations Faulting Slab stabilization
regarding the type of distresses that require repair Pumping Slab stabilization
and suitable treatments. As the overlay is intimately Replace with concrete patch to
Asphalt patch
bonded to the substrate, existing distress will have ensure bonding
a tendency to reflect through unless addressed. Joint spalling Partial-depth repair
After repairs are conducted, the surface should Scaling Remove with cleaning
be roughened and thoroughly cleaned to enhance

4. Construction Key elements of construction

include concrete placement, curing, and joint
sawing. Although conventional construction
techniques are used, curing is especially criti-
cal because the thinness of the layer gives it a
high surface area to volume ratio, making it very
susceptible to moisture loss. Also, as the underly-
ing pavement will continue to move in response to
changing temperatures, it is critical that joint saw-
ing be initiated as soon as possible to minimize the
chance for random cracking.
Figure 7.10 Bonded overlay
Existing pavement condition

Bonded Bonded
Preventive on on Asphalt
maintenance Concrete or
before treatment

Minor Unbonded
rehabilitation Concrete
on Asphalt
Major or
rehabilitation Composite


Figure 7.9 Typical applications for bonded and unbonded concrete overlays on existing concrete and
asphalt/composite pavements (Harrington et al. 2008)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL 63

Unbonded Concrete Overlays Shorter joint spacing than normal is often needed
Unbonded concrete overlays have been successfully to reduce stresses due to temperature curling.
used in the rehabilitation of concrete pavements for Joints do not need to be matched or purposely
decades and are viable treatments to address concrete mismatched.
pavements with some structural deterioration. Since
the overlay is essentially designed as a new concrete As the overlay is isolated from the underlying pave-
pavement, it can restore load-carrying capacity, provid- ment, this treatment is ideal for concrete pavements
ing a new riding surface and extending pavement life. that are near or at the end of their life but can still
The overlay has an effective service life similar to a provide good, uniform support for the new overlay.
newly constructed concrete pavement. The following is a summary of the unbonded concrete
overlay process (Harrington et al. 2008):
Unbonded concrete overlays are typically 6- to 11-in.
thick, depending on the anticipated traffic and the 1. Pavement evaluation The existing pavement
condition of the underlying pavement (Harrington et should be evaluated to ensure that it can provide
al. 2008). As the name implies, the overlay is pur- good uniform support for the unbonded concrete
posely separated from the underlying slab; that is, it is overlay and, if not, to determine what actions are
designed independently, considering the existing pave- needed to obtain uniformity. Although a candidate
ment as a base. As such, unbonded concrete overlays pavement can be suffering MRD, the evaluation
do not require extensive pre-overlay repair, nor do should confirm that future expansion will not result
joints need to be matched with those in the underly- in blow-ups of the underlying pavement in time.
ing slab. The keys to effectively using an unbonded
2. Overlay design Unbonded concrete overlays are
overlay are as follow (Harrington et al. 2008):
typically 6- to 11-in. thick, and thickness is com-
The existing pavement is in poor condition but is monly designed using the AASHTO (1993) Guide
stable and uniform. Material-related distress (MRD) for Design of Pavement Structures, although the use
is not a concern as long as continued expansion of the new AASHTO mechanistic-empirical design
will not result in blow-ups. will continue to grow in popularity. The separation
layer has traditionally been a 1-in. thick hot-mix
Ideal applications are existing pavements that asphalt surface course, although the use of thick,
require significant improvement in structural capac- nonwoven geosynthetics is showing promise. Con-
ity and/or serviceability (ride quality, skid resis- ventional concrete mixtures have been successfully
tance, and so on). used in constructing unbonded concrete overlays.
Full-depth repairs are conducted only in iso- Joint design includes the use of dowel bars for
lated locations where structural integrity must be unbonded overlays 8-in. thick or greater and the
restored. use of short joint spacing to minimize temperature
curling stresses. Typical joint spacing is shown in
Traditionally, the overlay is separated from the Table 7-2. Drainage must be considered to avoid
underlying pavement through the use of a thin damage to the asphalt separation layer. Edge sup-
(1-in.) asphalt layer. Recent use of a thick, non- port should be provided with tied concrete shoul-
woven geotextile as the separation layer has been ders in lieu of widened overlay slabs to avoid high
promising, and this strategy is likely to grow in curling stresses.
acceptance (Rasmussen and Garber 2009).
3. Pre-overlay repair Typically only distresses result-
Faulting is generally not a problem if it is 0.38 in. ing from major loss of structural integrity require
or less and if a 1-in. thick asphalt separation layer pre-overlay repair for unbonded concrete overlays.
is used. Table 7-3 provides recommendations regarding the
type of distresses that require repair and suitable
Joint sawing must be done promptly following con- treatments.
struction of the overlay.

64 Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

4. Construction Key elements of construction include Table 7.2 Recommended Transverse Joint Spacing
concrete placement, curing, and joint sawing. for Unbonded Concrete Overlay (Harrington et al.
Although conventional construction techniques are
used, curing is especially critical if a relatively thin Unbonded Resurfacing Maximum Transverse
Thickness Joint Spacing
unbonded overlay is used because of the high sur-
face area to volume ratio, making it very susceptible < 5 in. (125 mm) 6 x 6 ft (1.8 x 1.8 m) panels
to moisture loss. Also, it is critical that joint saw- 57 in. (125175 mm)
Spacing in feet =
2 times thickness in inches
ing be initiated as soon as possible to minimize the
chance for random cracking, as the underlying high > 7 in. (175 mm) 15 ft (4.6 m)
level of restraint and stiff support will result in rapid
development of tensile stresses.
Table 7.3 Pre-Overlay Repair Recommendations
Unbonded concrete overlays continue to enjoy popu- for Unbonded Concrete Overlays (Harrington et al.
larity as an excellent strategy for the rehabilitation of
concrete pavements nearing the end of their useful life. Existing Pavement Possible Repairs to
Condition Consider
See Figure 7.11. The overlay has all of the sustainability
Faulting 0.250.38 in.
advantages inherent in a newly constructed concrete None
(610 mm)
pavement, without the added economic and environ- Faulting > 0.38 in.
Thicker separation layer
mental costs associated with crushing and removing (10 mm)
the existing pavement and transporting and compact- Significant tenting Full-depth repair
ing new base material. In effect, the agency retains and Badly shattered slabs Full-depth repair
builds on the equity invested in the original pave- Full-depth spot repair and
Significant pumping
ment. The amount of fuel used to construct an over- drainage improvements
lay is reportedly considerably less than that used for Severe joint spalling Clean
new construction, thereby reducing the impact of the CRCP with punchouts
Full-depth repair
or other severe damage
rehabilitation. Further, traffic delays during construc-
tion are minimized, as the existing pavement provides
an excellent working platform, minimizing delays due
to weather that can be problematic when removing the
existing pavement and constructing the base. Finally,
since unbonded concrete overlays are typically thinner
than a newly constructed pavement designed for the
same traffic loading, unbonded overlays provide addi-
tional economic and environmental benefits through
the use of less material. In combination, these factors
make unbonded overlays a very sustainable treatment
option to rehabilitate pavements nearing the end of their
useful life.

5. Summary
The application of proper concrete pavement preventive
maintenance and rehabilitation strategies is essential to
extend the life of a concrete pavement while ensuring
that it remains in a structurally sound, smooth, and safe
condition over its life cycle. Applying the right strategy
at the right time contributes to the overall sustainabil-
ity of the pavement by ensuring it meets or exceeds its Figure 7.11 Unbonded overlay

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL 65

design life with minimum impact. Not only are eco- guide_concrete_overlays_2nd_ed.pdf.; accessed
nomic savings maximized, but the negative economic August 5, 2011)
and environmental impacts of vehicle operations are
International Grooving and Grinding Association
minimized as well, while the pavement is maintained
(IGGA). ND. Buried Treasure: Discover Value With CPR.
in a safe condition. The techniques described in this
West Coxsackie, NY: IGGA.
chapter offer a variety of preventive maintenance tools
to address deterioration that results from usage and IGGA. 2010. Dowel Bar Retrofit Effective for CPR. West
time. In particular, the use of load transfer restora- Coxsackie, NY: IGGA.
tion and diamond grinding has been shown to extend
the life of a concrete pavement in a very cost-effective Rasmussen, R., and S. Garber. 2009. Nonwoven Geotex-
and environmentally friendly manner. As a concrete tile Interlayers for Separating Cementitious Pavement Lay-
pavement nears the end of its useful life, it can be ers: German Practice and U.S. Field Trials. Washington,
rehabilitated through the use of an unbonded overlay, D.C.: FHWA. (
essentially constructing a new concrete pavement on geotextile/geotextile.pdf; accessed August 17, 2011)
the surface of the old pavement. Thus, an engineer
Smith, K.D., T.E. Hoerner, and D.G. Peshkin. 2008.
skilled in the use of these and other strategies in the
Concrete Pavement Preservation WorkshopReference
pavement preventive maintenance and rehabilitation
Manual. Washington, D.C.: FHWA. (www.cptechcen-
toolkit can sustainably manage concrete pavements
into perpetuity.
pdf; accessed August 5, 2011)

Stubstad, R., M. Darter, C. Rao, T. Pyle, and W. Tabet.

6. References 2005. The Effectiveness of Diamond Grinding Concrete
American Association of State Highway and Transpor- Pavements in California. Final Report. Sacramento, CA:
tation Officials (AASHTO). 1993. Guide for Design of California Department of Transportation.
Pavement Structures. Washington, D.C.: AASHTO.
Van Dam, T., and P. Taylor. 2009. Building Sustainable
American Concrete Pavement Association (ACPA). Pavements With Concrete. Ames, IA: National Concrete
2006. Concrete Pavement Field ReferencePreservation Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University.
and Repair. Report EB239P. Skokie, IL: ACPA. (
ing.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
Correa, A., and B. Wong. 2001. Concrete Pavement
RehabilitationGuide for Diamond Grinding. Report No. Van Dam, T., J. Meijer, P. Ram, K. Smith, and J.
FHWA-SRC-1/10-01(5M). Washington, D.C.: FHWA. Belcher. 2011. Consideration of Economic and Envi-
ronmental Factors Over the Concrete Pavement Life
Frentress, D.P, and D.S. Harrington 2011 (draft). Guide
CycleA Michigan Study. Proceeding of the International
for Partial-Depth Repair of Concrete Pavements. Ames,
Concrete Sustainability Conference. Boston, MA.
IA: National Concrete Pavement Technology Center,
Iowa State University. Zimmerman, K.A., and A.S. Wolters. 2003. Pavement
Preservation: Integrating Pavement Preservation Practices
Harrington, D., et al. 2008. Guide to Concrete Overlays
and Pavement Management. Reference Manual, NHI
Sustainable Solutions for Resurfacing and Rehabilitating
Course 131104. Arlington, VA: National Highway
Existing Pavements, 2nd Ed. Ames, IA: National Con-
crete Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State Uni-
versity. (

66 Ch. 7. CONCRETE PAVEMENT RENEWAL Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice

Chapter 8
David Gress

The ultimate goal of recycling is to achieve a zero advance. In the past, economic cost was the driving
waste stream target utilizing all byproduct materials force that encouraged recycling, yet this is beginning
encountered in the rehabilitation or reconstruction of to change. Although cost will remain an important
a concrete pavement. Not only is this economically driver, the social and political awareness of the need
advantageous but in addition local recycling minimizes to be sustainable has recently become more signifi-
environmental impact by reducing the carbon foot- cant. This is especially true in regions of high popula-
print, embodied energy, and emissions and enhances tion density where limited availability of construction
social good by reducing the need for landfills and the materials very often leads to cost-effective options for
extraction of nonrenewable raw materials. Achieving recycling concrete pavements into new recycled con-
this goal ensures that a balance is struck among the crete and unbound base material. In addition, land-use
economic, environmental, and social factors that are sensitivities, traffic considerations, as well as overall
considered in the construction of concrete pavements. cost are also of greater importance in urban areas. The
As discussed in Chapter 2, the concept of recycling benefits of recycling include the following:
must be viewed as a cradle-to-cradle undertaking as
opposed to past thinking of cradle to grave. There is no Economic savings
practical grave for materials used in modern sustain- Reduced use of limited nonrenewable raw materials
able infrastructure, only a new beginning which allows
application of current technologies to achieve the goal Decreased demand for fuel and associated emis-
of zero waste in the rehabilitation and reconstruction sions from transport of waste to landfill and of new
of concrete pavements. materials to the site

Driven by cost, need, limited resources, and an envi- Improved land use, by minimizing both the need
ronmental awareness of the benefits of sustainability, for landfills and the need to develop more land for
concrete pavement recycling technology continues to resource extraction

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES 67
1. Introduction to Recycled Additional information on the use of recycled concrete
Concrete in transportation infrastructure can be found in the
following resources:
A subtle but important benefit of recycling concrete is
the potential benefit of reducing atmospheric carbon FHWA (1997)
dioxide (CO2) through carbon sequestration. The paste
FHWA (2007)
of the original concrete has approximately 25 percent
free calcium hydroxide (CH) which is potentially AASHTO M 319, Reclaimed Concrete Aggregate for
capable of sequestering a significant amount of the car- Unbound Soil-Aggregate Base Course
bon dioxide that was initially released during cement
AASHTO MP 16, Reclaimed Concrete Aggregate for
manufacturing due to the calcination of the limestone
Use as Coarse Aggregate in Hydraulic Cement Concrete
(calcium carbonate). Sequestration is simply the pro-
cess of reversing the calcination that occurred in the ACPA Engineering Bulletin 043P, Recycling Concrete
kiln when atmospheric CO2 reacts with CH present Pavements
in the hardened concrete to form calcium carbon-
ate (CaCO3). The rate of sequestration varies directly
with temperature, surface area, relative humidity, and 2. RCA Properties
concentration of CO2. Work through the Recycled It is important for users to understand the physical,
Materials Resource Center (RMRC) at the University chemical, and mechanistic properties of RCA in rela-
of New Hampshire has shown the potential benefit of tion to its proposed uses. In general, hydraulic cement
sequestering carbon dioxide using the free CH found concrete can easily be processed into RCA, which
in recycled concrete aggregate (RCA). has added value as an aggregate replacement in new
concrete, as a dense graded base material, as drain-
Sequestering is more efficient when RCA is used as able base material, or as fine aggregate; see Figure 8.1.
base material due to favorable environmental condi- These RCA materials are recognized by ASTM and
tions in a pavement subsurface base system as com- AASHTO as viable aggregates, and there is no need to
pared to concrete exposed during normal service request or apply for exceptions to standard specifica-
which carbonates slowly due to minimum exposed tions when they are utilized as new aggregate sub-
surface area, low moisture contents, and low matrix stitutes. Generally speaking, normal test criteria and
permeability (Gardner 2007). When concrete is specifications that apply for conventional aggregate
crushed the resulting RCA has increased surface area also apply for RCA materials.
exposing more CH to the atmosphere which acceler-
ates the rate of carbonation (Haselbach and Ma 2008).

Even though concrete recycling is a proven technol-

ogy, it is not uncommon for the public as well as some
governmental agencies to discredit its benefits due to
a perception that the concrete is a waste material and
therefore of little use. Overcoming this requires a posi-
tive attitude among the various stakeholders including
the responsible transportation agency, the environ-
mental agency in control, contractors, producers, and
the public. Success requires a common understanding
that recycled concrete is not a waste product and that
concrete has added value after it has been removed
and processed. To be successfully utilized, recycled
concrete must be viewed as another source of aggre-
gate with characteristics and value equivalent to the Figure 8.1 Recycled concrete aggregate (RCA)
aggregate material it replaces ton for ton. (photo courtesy of Jim Grove, FHWA)

68 Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Thorough discussions of the typical properties of RCA at a rate in excess of 30 percent can result in decreased
are found elsewhere (FHWA 2007, ACPA 2009, Obla concrete strength and the development of undesirable
et al. 2007). finishing issues.

Although normally not problematic, the abrasion resis-

Physical Properties tance of RCA, as determined by the Los Angeles Abra-
RCA is an engineered processed material that has sion (LAB) test, is often reduced due to the presence of
properties dependent on its proposed use. For the mortar fraction. The presence of materials-related
instance, if its proposed use is an aggregate in concrete distress in concrete that is to be recycled, such as ASR
then RCA must be processed to a higher standard than and D-cracking, has no effect on the RCA unless it is
if it were to be used as unbound, stabilized or drain- to be used as aggregate in new concrete. The poten-
able base. tial for future D-cracking in the new concrete can be
mitigated by reducing the maximum size of the RCA
RCA is processed to meet the same application criteria to in. or less. Similarly, ASR can be mitigated by
as required of any new aggregate. Although RCA must using normal mitigating techniques commonly used
pass the same testing requirements, it has unique char- for conventional concrete (AASHTO 2010, Gress et al.
acteristics which vary from conventional aggregate. 2003 and 2005).
For instance RCA consists of a combination of original
aggregate and old mortar and is very angular with The mortar fraction of the RCA contains CH as a
superior properties when used as a base material. The byproduct of portland cement hydration which when
quality of RCA concrete depends on the amount of in the presence of water goes into solution. This solu-
mortar that remains attached to the original aggregate. tion can react with atmospheric CO2 and form a solid
If processing is such that little mortar remains and no material called tufa which in the presence of fines
fines smaller than #4 sieve are used, the properties of can reduce the flow in improperly designed drainage
the RCA will be similar to the properties of the origi- systems using RCA. Conditions which lead to this are
nal aggregate. On the other hand, if significant mortar easily prevented in drainable bases (Wade et al. 1995).
remains and excessive fines are used, the properties
of the RCA will significantly impact those of the new
concrete, compromising its performance compared Chemical Properties
to concrete made with the original aggregates. This The paste component of mortar adhering to the RCA
uniqueness must be accounted for so that the RCA can particles significantly influences the overall alkalinity
be used to its best value application. Essentially any of RCA. The CH of a typical paving concrete is on the
grading can be achieved by varying processing proce- order of about three percent by mass of the original
dures such as type of crusher. concrete. Calcium hydroxide in a saturated solution
(1.8 grams per liter at room temperature) creates a
The added quality value of RCA varies depending on basic pH of 12.4. Although this is a low solubility, the
the application requirements of its use: CH is mobile through the pore system in the mortar
RCA concrete: highest added value paste. Water draining through base material is thus
expected to have a basic pH above neutral caused
Drainable base: high added value directly by the CH going into solution. A drainage base
Unbound base: intermediate added value effluent, except for unusually slow or stagnant flow or
the very first flushing of RCA with a high fines con-
Stabilized base: lowest added value tent, will never be supersaturated, so the pH will be
One of the major differences between RCA and con- significantly less than 12.4. Regardless, once the efflu-
ventional aggregate is the absorption capacity due to ent exits the drainage system, the pH will quickly be
the presence of the mortar fraction on the recycled reduced towards neutral by either dilution with water
or neutralization with soils and organics.
particles. Absorption increases inversely with particle
size, and thus substitution of fine aggregate with RCA

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES 69
RCA produced from concrete located in the northern percent of the concrete pavements that were being
tier of the United States may contain high levels of replaced were recycled into unbound base and drain-
chloride from the use of deicers which could cause age material rather than RCA concrete.
corrosion of steel reinforcement when used in CRCP
and JRCP applications. This can be mitigated through
the use of noncorrosive steel, steel with a corrosion
Properties of Plastic RCA Concrete
resistant coating, and/or corrosion inhibitors, and by The higher porosity and rough surface texture of RCA
washing the RCA prior to use in concrete. has an effect on the plastic properties of new concrete.
The extent of the effect is a function of the mortar
RCA that is obtained from a concrete source that has fraction adhering to the RCA particles as well as the
been affected by ASR must be evaluated for remaining angularity of the particles. Generally, as the amount of
expansion potential if it is to be used as an aggregate mortar increases the effect on workability and finish-
substitute in new concrete and proper mitigation strat- ability can become problematic. Limiting the amount
egies employed if expansion potential still exists. ASR of fines, which contain most of the old paste frac-
is not an issue if the RCA is to be used in unbound tion, to 25 percent minimizes water demand increase
layers including drainable base, dense-graded bases, (slump constant) by approximately 15 percent (Buck
subbase, or fill material (Saeed et al. 2006). 1973, Mukai et al. 1973). The effect of harshness is
easily controlled at the maximum level of substitution
Mechanical Properties (30 percent) with the use of supplementary cementi-
tious materials (SCMs) and water-reducing admixtures.
The mechanical properties of RCA are a function of
the quality and size of the particles. This is the direct When used in concrete RCA has the tendency to absorb
result of the effect of the mortar fraction which is water and reduce slump as discussed above. The impact
inversely related to the fineness. Generally the coarse of this is easily controlled by applying the same funda-
fractions have the least mortar so the properties of mental pre-batching procedures successfully used with
particles larger than a #4 sieve (4.75 mm) have proper- lightweight concrete. This is recommended instead of
ties similar to the original aggregate whereas the fines adding additional water during mixing.
have inferior properties compared to the original fine
aggregate. Generally RCA can be processed to have Entrained air is not affected by RCA; however, the abil-
more than adequate values of abrasion resistance, ity to entrap high amounts of air due to the angularity
soundness, and bearing strength. and rough surface area of the RCA makes it necessary
to increase the total amount of air by approximately
one percent to assure a good air-void system is devel-
3. RCA used in Concrete oped (Vandenbossche and Snyder 1993).
State agencies have utilized RCA as aggregate in The measurement of air content with a normal pres-
concrete pavements with well documented field per- sure meter is problematic unless it is specially cali-
formance, and surveys have been completed on the brated for the RCA being used due to the compress-
original RCA concrete pavements to validate their per- ible air in the voids within the old paste fraction of
formances (Wade et al. 1995, Gress et al. 2009). The the mortar (Fick 2008). Use of a volumetric method
results of these field investigations indicate that it is of determining air content (Roll-a-Meter or air-void
possible to produce pavements from recycled hydrau- analyzer) avoids the potential issues of measuring air
lic cement concrete that are equivalent in all aspects to within the RCA in plastic concrete.
pavements made with conventional aggregates. These
pavements were shown to be performing just as well
as their controls after 18 to 26 years of traffic (Gress et Properties of Hardened RCA Concrete
al. 2009). However, a survey conducted by the FHWA The physical properties of RCA can be engineered to
in 2004 when several states were visited to discuss achieve properties in new concrete similar to, or even
their current recycling procedures confirmed that 100 better than, the original concrete. This is accomplished

70 Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
by taking into consideration the properties of the moduli experience higher wetting and drying strain
original mortar, the original aggregate, RCA grading, due to significantly less restraint when the new and
substitution amount, and use of SCMs and admixtures. old paste wets and dries. Concrete can be expected
Concrete containing RCA is easily engineered to satisfy to have 20 to 50 percent higher wetting and drying
the design of any pavement by applying basic concrete shrinkage when it contains coarse RCA and natu-
technology to specify a given mix design. ral sand, and 70 to 100 higher shrinkage when it
contains both coarse and fine RCA (ACI 1994).
Strength The strength of RCA concrete can be eas- Higher moisture sensitivity requires more detailed
ily engineered to be less than, equivalent to, or even consideration of joint design in JPCP than would be
superior to the original concrete made with natural necessary in normal concrete.
aggregates. The primary influence is the amount of
RCA fines (material passing the #4 sieve) that are The coefficient of thermal expansion of concrete
used in the mix design. Strength generally decreases made with RCA is approximately 10 percent higher
with increased fines; however, each mix is unique than the original concrete made from any specific
with respect to the optimum amount of fines. In aggregate, but in some cases may be as much as
general, if the substitution of RCA fines is restricted 30 percent higher. And, as with wetting and dry-
to less than approximately 25 percent, the strength ing, temperature induced strains merit more detail
of the RCA concrete will be similar to that of new in establishing joint spacing to alleviate potential
concrete made with natural aggregate. Higher sub- warping and curling stresses in pavements.
stitution of RCA lowers the strength. When admix-
Creep of RCA concrete, typically 30 to 60 percent
tures and SCMs are not utilized to enhance RCA
higher than concrete containing natural aggre-
concrete, strength can be reduced as much as 24
gates, is also increased due to higher paste content.
percent when only coarse RCA is used and as much
Designing for the effect of creep is similar to what
as 40 percent when both coarse and high amounts
is done with lightweight aggregate concrete (ACI
of RCA fines are utilized (Hansen 1986). These
reductions have been shown to be the direct result
of the mortar content of the RCA (Snyder 1994). Permeability The permeability of concrete made
with RCA is highly affected by the water-to-
Modulus of elasticity Like strength, the static
cementitious material (w/cm) ratios of both the
modulus of elasticity of RCA concrete is also
original and new concrete. The old paste adhered to
inversely related to the RCA mortar content and
the RCA particles creates a short circuit for move-
the mix design of the new concrete. When admix-
ment of water through RCA concrete if the new
tures are not utilized to enhance the new concrete,
w/cm ratio is less than the original. The ability of
the elastic modulus can be reduced as much as 30
water to be transported through RCA concrete can
percent when only coarse RCA is used, and up to
be engineered to be less than, equal to, or greater
40 percent when both coarse and high amounts of
than the original concrete by varying the w/cm ratio
RCA fines are utilized (ACI 1994). of the concrete containing RCA, resulting in per-
Relative density The relative density of RCA con- meability ranging from less than to more than 500
crete is up to 15 percent lower due to the lighter percent greater than the original concrete.
weight mortar fraction than concrete manufac- Durability The durability of RCA concrete is
tured using natural aggregate (Hansen 1986). An not significantly different from that of the source
advantage of reduced relative density is the inflated concrete. Freezing and thawing resistance, for
volume relative to the weight of the RCA con- instance, is not an issue with RCA concrete provid-
crete allowing more concrete to be produced than ing the new paste contains an adequate air-void
removed from a given recycling project. size distribution. The issue is more in evaluating
Volumetric stability The wetting and drying shrink- the air content as discussed in the plastic concrete
age of RCA concrete is also directly affected by section. D-cracking, a special case of freeze-thaw
the mortar content. Aggregates with lower elastic distress, has been shown to be improved when the

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES 71
maximum size of the RCA particles is restricted to conventional new aggregate; however, RCA may have
less than the critical size to cause D-cracking (Stur- higher value for use in other sustainable applications
tevant 2007, Gress et al. 2009). such as replacing natural aggregate in new concrete.

Alkali-silica reactivity Concrete containing RCA From an environmental perspective, the use of RCA
may have potential for ASR if the source concrete as unbound base material has very significant benefits
contained alkali-reactive aggregate. It cannot be including lowering CO2 emissions, reducing transpor-
assumed that ASR will not develop in the new con- tation fuel consumption, lessening the use of higher
crete if special control measures are not taken. If the valued natural aggregate, and sequestering of CO2
RCA contains reactive aggregate, mitigation strate- through carbonation of the CH within the increased
gies must be developed, even if expansive ASR did surface area of the RCA particles.
not develop in the original concrete. Petrographic
While it is estimated that 100 percent of replaced
examination and remaining ASR potential expan-
concrete pavements are recycled, approximately 70
sion tests are recommended to make this judgment
percent of all state agencies utilize RCA as unbound
(Stark 1996, Gress et al. 2000a and b, FWHA 2009).
base course (RMRC Survey 2011). RCA has similar
Severely ASR-damaged concrete has been success- or better properties than natural aggregate that are
fully recycled into new concrete with little evidence essential for high-quality base course construction.
of recurrent ASR damage (Gress et al. 2009). If SCM For instance RCA has rougher surface texture, higher
is used as a means to mitigate ASR in RCA concrete, shear strength, higher rutting resistance, and higher
the appropriate dosage levels should be determined resilient modulus. These exceptional qualities allow
by using ASTM C 1567. Other mitigating tech- for unrestricted use of RCA as base materials up to and
niques include admixtures such as lithium nitrate including 100 percent substitution of new aggregate.
and low alkali cement. Environmental evaluation is not necessary when RCA
is used for base, subbase, and subgrade improvement.
Carbonation and corrosion Research indicates that
rates of carbonation of concrete containing RCA Pavements with a materials-related distress such as
is up to 65 percent higher than that of concrete ASR, D-cracking, or freeze-thaw distress can be effec-
containing only natural aggregate (Gardner 2007). tively used as unbound base material without concern
From a sustainability view, reducing atmospheric of reduced performance. The only exception, although
CO2 through carbonation is very beneficial; how- rare, is that in areas where an external source of sulfate
ever, for reinforced structures, increased carbon- is present, RCA should be utilized with great caution
ation can cause more rapid corrosion of embedded (Saeed et al. 2006). In such areas where exposure to
steel reinforcing if the carbonation front reaches the sulfate is possible from subgrade soils, ground water,
depth of the steel, particularly in locations where or other external sources, the existing concrete must
chloride concentrations are high. These rates and be extensively evaluated for expansion resulting from
depths of carbonation significantly decrease with ettringite formation.
reduced w/cm ratios (Rasheeduzzafar and Khan
It is generally accepted that after unbound RCA base
is compacted, its strength and stiffness increase. A
misinterpretation of this phenomenon is that this is
4. RCA in Foundations due to hydration of unhydrated portland cement con-
tained within the paste portion of the RCA. Instead,
RCA has several applications as support material. the increased stiffness is credited to the carbonation
of very soluble CH released by the RCA in the pres-
RCA as Unbound Base Material ence of moisture, which is constantly available in the
subsurface base.
Recycling concrete pavements into RCA is a viable
alternative for unbound base course construction. Testing criteria for RCA are similar to those required
RCA as a rule is considered a superior material for for natural aggregate; typically, this is a non-issue for
unbound applications such as bases when compared to RCA derived from concrete utilized in pavements. One

72 Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
exception is the sulfate soundness test (ASTM C 88) and compaction. In a properly tuned crusher it is
which destroys the RCA paste fraction due to sulfate possible to return 100 percent of the crushed mate-
attack. This test should not be specified for evaluat- rial as unbound base. Adding additional lanes during
ing RCA as it has no relevance to the performance of reconstruction easily consumes the inflated volume of
RCA as an unbound base material. It is also sometimes base material produced, whereas if there are elevation
difficult to pass the aggressiveness of the LAB hardness control issues and no new lanes then it may be difficult
test if the concrete was made with marginal aggregate to use 100 percent of the RCA on site.
and/or when the RCA paste content is high. To address
these two exceptions in RCA specifications, it is com-
mon to eliminate the sulfate soundness testing and RCA as Drainable Base
increase the LAB limit to 50 percent. When RCA is used as a drainable base, special consid-
eration must be given to the design. A proper design
The number-one benefit of using RCA as base material
places all RCA below the elevation of the inlet of the
is the economic savings resulting from lower transpor-
drainage system and, if geotextiles are used, the flow
tation costs, elimination of landfill charges to dispose
must be parallel to the geotextile and not through it.
of the removed concrete, and the savings derived from
Improper design will result in the formation of tufa
not buying natural aggregate base material. The use of
from the fines and CH, clogging pipes and other ele-
RCA varies state by state but is typically a contractor
ments of the drainage system.
decision in that it is not usually specified except as an
option. More moisture is required during construction, Effluent from drainable bases containing RCA can
but compaction is easier to obtain than with natural have pH values greater than 7.0 due to the leaching
aggregate. As with all aggregates, control of grading of CH. This has not been found to be problematic in
and segregation needs to be given proper attention ecosystems. Although effluent from an RCA drainable
during base construction. base can have increased pH, especially during the first
flushing cycle of water, it has no buffering capacity and
It is also possible to effectively utilize the existing pave-
is equivalent to adding lime to stabilize the effect of
ment as base by employing fractured-slab techniques,
acid rain on a lawn. As such, there is little to no envi-
thus leaving the concrete in place. Several fractured-
ronmental impact. The ability of the CH to be removed
slab techniques can be used including rubblization
from the paste in the leachate is a function of paste
and crack and seat. As these two techniques are done
permeability which is extremely low, being on the
in place, no trucking, crushing, or aggregate grading
order of 10-7 cm/sec. Nevertheless it must be expected
is required and thus costs are lowered. Newer in-situ
that CH will slowly go into solution and be removed
recycling techniques have been deployed on a number
with flowing effluent. In stagnant flow conditions, the
of projects that actually go a step further than frac-
leachate could reach a pH as high as 12.4; however,
tured-slab techniques by actually lifting the concrete
this will quickly dissipate as the leachate encounters
off grade, crushing it, and placing it back on grade
soils and organic materials commonly present in soils.
ready for compaction. The mobile crushers are track
In such cases, vegetation in the immediate vicinity of
mounted, and the entire operation moves along the
drainage structures can be affected before neutraliza-
alignment requiring no additional trucking. Some of
these in-situ recycling methods even size the aggregate tion occurs.
to further improve performance.

To achieve a more conventional unbound base, it is

RCA as Stabilized Base
necessary for the concrete pavement to be fractured, RCA is easily stabilized as a base material by adding
removed from the site, and crushed using conven- cementitious binders (such as lime and fly ash (LFATB)
tional crushing equipment. The crusher is often or portland cement (CTB)) or an asphaltic binder
sited near the pavement to reduce transportation (ATB). As was discussed for unbound bases, the high
costs and impacts. The equipment can be simple or angularity and rough surface texture of RCA makes
sophisticated. The crushed material is processed and it an exceptional base material that in many ways is
transported to its designated location for spreading superior to naturally available materials. When the

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES 73
cementitious content is increased, a stronger material future. Two-lift pavement construction can be used
called lean concrete base (LCB) is easily produced. to satisfy the economic, environmental, and social
The use of RCA for these applications has added value aspects essential for sustainable design. Economi-
because 100 percent of the product can be utilized and cally the benefits include reduced capital invest-
there is no need to remove the fine portion of the RCA ment and greatly increased service life with lower
which, as discussed, is problematic for other applica- maintenance and rehabilitation costs. Environ-
tions. Using RCA fines in stabilized base applications mental benefits include a smaller carbon footprint,
has no negative impact on its physical or chemical reduced expended energy, and less overall pollution
properties. and waste. Societal aspects include reduced disrup-
tion, noise reduction, and improved safety through
It is also possible to use RCA to create asphalt stabi- increased skid resistance.
lized bases (ATB). Conceptually the process is equiva-
lent to making CTB except the effect of absorption can The future of two-lift construction for sustainable
be problematic, not from a moisture control issue but construction of concrete pavements is exceptional.
as an economic issue since there will be an increased It is known that the cost and availability of supe-
demand for asphaltic binder due to the absorption of rior quality materials will continue to decline. The
the RCA. The extra absorbed asphalt binder is, for all use of RCA of any quality is more than adequate
practical purposes, unavailable for improving the bases for the construction of the thick underling bottom
physical properties. lift of the two-lift system, including RCA mixed
with RAP. This reduces demand for the higher
quality, costly aggregate materials typically used in
5. Recycled Concrete in Other the high-performance top lift. The result is a high
Applications performance pavement, consisting of a thin wear-
resistant surface bonded to a tough, low-modulus,
Special applications of recycled concrete are limited high fatigue-resistant, thick bottom lift, creating a
only by the imagination of the designer. For instance, sustainable composite pavement. Even when the
architectural use of large irregular fractured slabs can pavement nears the end of its useful service life, the
result in the innovative use of recycled concrete rang- high quality thin top layer can easily be selectively
ing in size from riprap to massive slabs. Likewise, use reclaimed for reuse, thus ending the cycle of cradle
of reclaimed rubble can be used as fill material, backfill to grave and starting the new wave of the future,
for retaining walls, pipe bedding, artificial reefs for fish cradle to cradlea truly sustainable concept we
habitats, construction site soil stabilization, etc. (Van- can live with.
denbossche and Snyder 1993, CMRA 2011).

RAP in concrete Concrete can be made using 6. References

recycled asphalt pavement (RAP) as a portion of
the aggregate, using conventional concrete mixing American Concrete Pavement Association (ACPA).
1993. Concrete Paving Technology: Recycling Concrete
and construction practices. Concrete made with
Pavement. Skokie, IL: ACPA.
RAP exhibits a systematic reduction in compression
and tension strengths and an increase in toughness. ACPA. 2009. Recycling Concrete Pavements. Engineering
Generally, strength declines and toughness increases Bulletin 043P, Skokie, IL: ACPA.
with increased amounts of RAP. The coarse particles
have the least effect on these properties, suggesting American Association of State Highway and Transpor-
that coarse RAP may be more practical to use as an tation Officials (AASHTO). 2010. Standard Practice for
aggregate substitute (Huang et al. 2005). Determining the Reactivity of Concrete Aggregates and
Selecting Appropriate Measures for Preventing Deleterious
RCA in two-lift construction As discussed in Chap- Expansion in New Concrete Construction. Washington,
ter 3, two-lift concrete pavement design is re-estab- D.C.: AASHTO.
lishing itself in the United States and has the poten-
tial of becoming the sustainable pavement of the

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AASHTO. 1986. Standard Method of Test: Density of Fick, G. J. 2008. Testing Guide for Implementing Con-
Soil In-Place by the Rubber-Balloon Method, AAS- crete Paving Quality Control Procedures. Ames, IA:
HTO Designation: T 205-86, Part II Tests, 14th Ed. National Concrete Pavement Technology Center, Iowa
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AASHTO. 1986. Standard Method of Test: Density of mco/testing_guide.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
Soil and Soil-Aggregate in Place by Nuclear Methods
(Shallow Depth). AASHTO Designation: T 238-86, Gardner, K. 2007. Concrete Carbonation. Final Report,
Part II Tests, 14th Ed. Research Project 12. Dunham, NH: Recycled Materials
Resource Center, University of New Hampshire. (www.
AASHTO. 1986. Standard Method of Test: Moisture;
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Returned Concrete as Aggregates for New Concrete. Final Concrete Pavements Containing Recycled Concrete Aggre-
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76 Ch. 8. END OF LIFE RECYCLING CONCEPTS AND STRATEGIES Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Chapter 9
Tom Van Dam
Emily Lorenz

According to the 2010 U.S. census, 83.7 percent of the smog, safety concerns, and even aesthetics play a
308.7 million inhabitants of the United States reside greater role in design because any impact has the
in metropolitan areas, living in core urban areas with ability to affect a larger population. Thus, potential
a population of 50,000 or more (Mackun and Wilson strategies that may be cost prohibitive in a rural loca-
2011). The number of people living in urban and sub- tion may now become cost effective. Also, strategies
urban areas is increasing while fewer are in rural areas, that would not have been considered before are now
resulting in increased population density. Increasing applicable when the societal impacts are considered.
density has both beneficial and detrimental effects with
respect to the transportation industry. High popula- Concrete pavements provide unique characteristics
tion density means that distances traveled within the that make them useful in an urban environment. Of
city are low (reduction in average trip distance), thus specific interest in the urban environment is their
reducing fuel consumption, but it also means that longevity, which reduces interruptions (and the associ-
considerable resources must be transported into the ated traffic impacts) for rehabilitation. Also of interest
city, with the associated traffic and emission impacts. is the high surface reflectivity index (SRI) as discussed
Cities are often surrounded by suburban sprawl, which in Chapter 6. High SRI can help mitigate the urban
has a highly adverse impact due to large commuting heat island effect while also decreasing the need for
distances that are economically, socially, and environ- and cost of artificial lighting (Marceau and VanGeem
mentally costly, especially when traffic is delayed due 2007). In addition, the use of photocatalytic cements
to road maintenance. The infrastructure needs of a city and coatings can be applied in the urban environment
are significant, including pavements, sidewalks, water, to provide additional reflectivity while also convert-
sewer utilities, and power transmission lines. Such ing NOx, SOx, and volatile organic compounds into
systems are extremely sensitive to disruption, result- solids that precipitate out and can be washed off the
ing in large social impacts when natural or manmade pavement.
disasters occur. Concrete can also be colored and molded to create
Pavements represent a key element in this infrastruc- aesthetically pleasing pavement landscaping designs
ture, and it is estimated that paved surfaces for travel that can be constructed at crosswalks or busy intersec-
and parking can account for 29 to 39 percent of the tions to help slow the flow of traffic in urban neigh-
land surface area in urban regions (Akbari et al. 1999, borhoods, making them more pedestrian friendly.
Rose et al. 2003). The importance of incorporating Additionally, concrete pavements can be effectively
sustainability measures into the pavement life cycle is textured to help reduce pavement-tire noise that could
thus amplified, as environmental and societal impacts otherwise detract from an otherwise quiet neighbor-
of the built environment are concentrated in urban hood. Finally, pervious concrete can be constructed
environments. Traffic congestion and user delays, in urban settings to help address critical surface storm
water run-off issues.
1. The Urban Environment Urban Heat Island Effect

A sustainable-growth strategy is to build in already The heat island effect occurs where a local area of ele-
densely populated areas with the goal of improving vated temperature is located within a region of relatively
or rehabilitating existing dense zones. Undeveloped cooler temperatures, as discussed in Chapter 6. Because
land is becoming scarce, and consumption of land of the greater density of paved and covered surfaces in
for pavements, bridges, and buildings reduces the urban environments, the heat island effect occurs most
amount of land that would be otherwise available for frequently in urban areas. The effects of urban heat
agriculture, wildlife habitats, and parks. With any islands are broad, resulting not only in increased levels
development, it is critical to implement sustainable of discomfort and increased energy to artificially manage
site-development strategies by minimizing distur- temperature within buildings but also, occasionally, in
bance to existing ecosystems, restoring areas dam- life-threatening conditions (FEMA 2007). These life-
aged during construction, and designing pavements, threatening conditions can develop when temperatures
bridges, drainage systems and buildings to minimize rise above 75F, which increases the probability of forma-
their environmental impact. As structures are reha- tion of ground-level ozone (commonly called smog) that
bilitated in urban centers, there is opportunity to add exacerbates respiratory conditions such as asthma. At
resources such as bike paths and walkways, further the same time, higher temperatures also lead to greater
increasing livability and potentially reducing traffic. reliance on air conditioning, which leads to more energy
Compared to rural areas, urban areas are more suit-
Mitigating the urban heat island effect is a priority
able for walking and pedestrian traffic as businesses
for groups such as the U.S. Environmental Protection
(employers) and services (such as basic utilities,
Agency (EPA), which suggests using reflective paving
schools, banks, and hospitals) are in place (Loehr
materials, such as conventional concrete, as one miti-
2009) and distances traveled are much shorter. Fur-
gation strategy (EPA 2009). Additives that can further
ther, larger metropolitan areas typically have alterna-
increase the SRI of concrete, such as slag cement or
tive forms of transportation available, such as com-
light-colored fly ash, are also recommended (Van Dam
muter trains, trams, light rail, and public buses that
and Taylor 2009).
reduce the demand for automobile travel.

All of these attributes make cities desirable places to Artificial Lighting

live, as well as more sustainable. But it also makes
cities more sensitive to changes in the environment. There are additional benefits in using light-colored
For instance, even small disruptions to traffic flow concrete pavements. As Wathne (2011) discusses, light-
due to construction affect many more people than colored pavements can also improve safety by improving
in rural areas. Thus, pavement design strategies to night visibility while reducing artificial lighting require-
extend design life and reduce the need for closures ments, thus saving energy and reducing emissions. Gajda
and Van Geem (2001) showed that concrete pavements
are extremely important in the urban environment.
require fewer lights per length of roadway than dark-col-
ored pavements to achieve the same illumination level.
2. Reducing Environmental In a similar study, Adrian and Jabanputra (2005)
Impacts in the Urban researched the influence of pavement reflectance on
Environment lighting requirements for parking lots. In their study,
they compared asphalt and concrete surfaced roadways
Concrete pavements can be part of the solution in
in four ways:
mitigating the environmental impacts of dense urban
environments. Total light reflected from a surface
Relationship of surface reflection characteristics and
Light, Reflective Surfaces power distribution of lighting lamps
Concrete pavements can help reduce the urban heat Luminance and visibility levels with typical parking
island effect and the reliance on artificial lighting. lot lighting systems

78 Ch. 9. CONCRETE PAVEMENTS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Equivalent luminance of two systems based on vary- bridge piers contained 15 percent portland cement, 18
ing lamp wattage and number of fixtures percent fly ash, and 67 percent slag cement (ACI 2009).
This high-SCM-content concrete reduced the carbon
Results of their research show that, on average, a lighter
footprint and embodied energy of the concrete by
surface is 1.77 times more luminous than a darker sur-
approximately 75 percent (Van Dam and Taylor 2009).
face and has a more uniform luminance distribution.
An analysis was also performed to create equivalent As discussed in Chapter 6, the energy consumed during
luminance levels for the two systems based on varying pavement use through vehicle-pavement interaction
the number and intensity of the luminaires being used may have a significant impact on the life-cycle energy
to establish the relative energy use of the two systems. use of the pavement. This has greater relevancy in
When varying the lamp power and assuming that the urban areas where greater traffic volume dictates that
parking lot lights are on for five hours a day, the darker even a minor reduction in fuel consumption and corre-
parking lot used 60 percent more energy than the sponding reduction in emissions for a given pavement
lighter parking lot. With modifications to the number will result in an improvement in sustainability.
of poles needed and still assuming that the parking lot In addition, vehicle emissions can also be treated as
lights are on for five hours a day, the darker parking lot they interact with photocatalytic surfaces while exposed
used 57 percent more energy than the lighter parking lot. to sunlight. This has been demonstrated through
In urban environments, photocatalytic cements and/or laboratory experiments and in-service structures and
coatings may be a viable option to help maintain highly pavements that have been constructed and monitored
reflective surfaces. Although photocatalysts, such as the to determine the applicability of photocatalytic cements
anatase form of titanium dioxide, have been known for and coatings as a way to reduce air pollution, including
decades to have the ability to keep surfaces clean, they NOx, SOx, and VOCs (TX Active 2011). Although this
have recently been gaining attention for urban infra- technology is just catching on in the United States, con-
structure applications by incorporating it in cement crete pavers surfaced with photocatalytic titanium diox-
(Italcementi 2005). The use of a photocatalytic titanium ide are being marketed in urban areas throughout the
dioxide cement for the Gateway concrete sculptures country and the world. Figure 9.1 shows an example
placed at either end of the reconstructed I-35W bridge from Japan where photocatalytic concrete pavers have
in Minneapolis in 2008 (ACI 2009) was one early U.S. been used to create an aesthetically pleasing sidewalk
application of this technology, but since then it has while also reducing air pollution. As the effectiveness
been used in interlocking concrete pavers (Schaffer of photocatalytic cements and coatings continues to be
2009) and in two-lift concrete pavement construction demonstrated, their use is expected to grow in the urban
(Gates 2011). A white photocatalytic material such as environment.
titanium dioxide is not only highly reflective at the time
of construction, it is self-cleaning and maintains its high
solar reflectance and greater visibility for a longer time.
On the other hand, the material is more expensive than
normal portland cement, requiring a balance between
increased costs and reduced environmental impact.

Reduced Emissions, Enhanced Fuel

As discussed in Chapter 4, one way to reduce the
embodied emissions in concrete pavements is to use
high supplementary cementitious material (SCM)-
content binder systems and/or those containing port-
land-limestone cements. One such system was used in
elements of the I-35W Bridge reconstruction project Figure 9.1 Photocatalytically active colored
in Minneapolis, in which the binder for the concrete concrete pavers in Japan (Chusid 2005)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 9. CONCRETE PAVEMENTS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT 79
Reduced Waste of water per minute per square foot of surface, as
There are only a finite number of areas available for land- illustrated in Figure 9.3. This allows rainwater to seep
filling of waste, and these areas are becoming increasingly into the ground versus running off, thereby recharg-
scarce in densely populated urban areas. Typically, urban ing groundwater instead of rapidly moving from the
areas must dispose of waste at a landfill outside of the pavement surface to nearby bodies of water. Surface
city or metropolitan area limits. As an example, New York water with organic contaminants is also allowed to
City (NYC) transported over 3,000,000 tons of municipal percolate into the ground where it is filtered by the
solid waste in 2004 over great distances to other states underlying soil. Thus, previous concrete can be used
such as Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Ohio (Lauber et al. in urban areas to eliminate the need for other storm
2006). This not only incurs a high economic cost but water management devices such as retention ponds
also generates significant environmental costs due to and swales (PCA 2011).
increased energy usage and emissions. It is important to recognize thatalthough the U.S.
One way of reducing the amount of waste is to make use EPA (2011) cites the use of pervious concrete as a
of the existing pavement materials. For example, inno- Best Management Practice (BMP) for the manage-
vative in-situ recycling techniquessuch as recycling ment of storm water runoff on a regional and local
trains that can recycle existing pavements in placehave basispervious concrete is not applicable in all situ-
recently been employed on existing concrete pavements ations. For example, pervious concrete is best used
(Van Dam and Taylor 2009). These techniques reduce in low-volume traffic applications such as roadway
costs and the environmental impacts of transportation by
reducing the amount of solid waste that must be trans-
ported either to crushing plants or landfills while reduc-
ing the amount of virgin materials needed on site (see
Chapter 8).

Reduced Storm Water Run-off

Precipitation runs off hard, impermeable surfaces (such
as pavements) much faster than off undeveloped or
vegetated surfaces. The concern from the standpoint of
environmental impact is that storm water systems will Figure 9.2 Pervious concrete (photo courtesy of
be overfilled when large areas of vegetation are replaced John Kevern, University of Missouri-Kansas City)
with paved or hard surfaces, resulting not only in flood-
ing but also in erosion and the transport of pollution into
nearby surface waters and increased temperatures in the
streams. Typical storm water management techniques,
such as retention ponds, are expensive and difficult to
implement in urban areas due to lack of available land.
Thus, innovative solutions are acutely needed for these
One innovative solution to address the storm water
quantity and quality control issue is the use of pervi-
ous concrete (NRMCA 2009); see Figure 9.2. Pervious
concrete is manufactured in place with a substantial void
contentbetween 15 percent and 25 percentcreated
by the use of little or no sand (Tennis et al. 2004).

With its high void content, pervious concrete allows rain-

water to drain through it at a rate of about 3 to 8 gallons Figure 9.3 Water passing through pervious
concrete (NRMCA 2009)

80 Ch. 9. CONCRETE PAVEMENTS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
shoulders, parking lots, or alleys. It is ideal for appli- vehicle and pedestrian areas, for example). At the same
cation in urban areas where parking and alleys are a time, various texturing patterns can be achieved by
common feature. brushing and washing away surface mortar as the con-
crete begins to harden, exposing the stone or gravel in
The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) the concrete, or by embedding attractive stones such as
has an effective program in which it is using pervious marble, granite chips, or pebbles into the surface.
concrete in many of the citys alleys. Called the Green
Alley program, one of the initiatives is to use more Semi-hardened concrete can be pattern-stamped with
permeable pavements to divert storm water from special tools to create the custom look and feel of slate,
the sewer system. The city is thus saved significant cobblestone, brick, or tile. Figure 9.4 is a photograph
expense by not having to pump and treat storm water of a Blome Granitoid pavement constructed in 1906 in
that is co-mingled with sewage. Pervious concrete Calumet, Michigan, in which the aesthetically-pleasing
pavements have been used in both center-trench and brick pattern was also functional, preventing horses
full-width applications. CDOT (2010) launched the from slipping. The patterns can help scale down large
Green Alley program because it could reap three sus- expanses of paving, as shown in Figure 9.5.
tainability benefits simultaneously:
Or, simply, concrete can be cast in a wide variety of
Management of storm water colors. Pastels and earth tones are produced by mixing
Heat-island reduction because pervious surfaces mineral pigments throughout the concrete. For deeper
are cooler
Use of recycled materials in the mixture
Ultimately, by integrating paving and drainage, less
site area is typically needed to manage storm water,
allowing a more compact site development footprint.
This is critical in an urban environment.

3. Reducing Societal Impacts

in the Urban Environment
Concretes versatility makes it a good solution to cre-
ate highly functional, economical pavements that also Figure 9.4 Blome Granitoid concrete pavement
meet environmental and social needs (Van Dam and constructed in 1906 in Calumet, Michigan; the brick
pattern was stamped into the surface to keep horses
Taylor 2009). By using concrete, pavement designers
from slipping (photo courtesy of Tom Van Dam,
can enhance communities, incorporating color and CTLGroup
texture into aesthetically pleasing patterns, demarcat-
ing pedestrian crossings, quieting road noise, provid-
ing safer surfaces, and reducing user delays.

Enhanced Aesthetics
Concrete is an extremely moldable material and can
be transformed to fit into its surroundings. Aesthetic
interest can be added to concrete elements with the
use of texture, color, or patterns. Although it is not
likely to be cost effective for the main riding surface
of a concrete pavement, cross walks, walk ways,
shoulders, and other elements of the pavement can Figure 9.5 Modern Blome Granitoid concrete
receive different treatments to add visual interest or pavement (photo courtesy of Tom Van Dam,
to demarcate one area of use from another (separating CTLGroup)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 9. CONCRETE PAVEMENTS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT 81
tones, finishers use the dry-shake methodsprinkling However, the same communities that object to noise
powdered, prepackaged color hardeners onto a freshly generated on a high-speed roadway may have a different
cast concrete slab, then troweling it into the surface. set of criteria for local, slow-speed roads serving their
neighborhoods. At slower speeds (less than 35 mph)
Aesthetically pleasing, durable pavements can be
engine noise is dominant; therefore, pavement texturing
achieved by using interlocking concrete pavers.
will have little effect on noise. In such locations, noise
These can also be designed to be permeable, highly
may less critical than aesthetics, pedestrian safety, high
reflective, and/or photocatalytic to meet a number of
reflectivity, or surface drainage. It is even possible that
sustainability goals. Interlocking pavements are ideal
an urban neighborhood might desire that roughness be
in locations where there are underground services
designed into the surface to produce a calming effect on
because if repairs are needed in the utilities, the pav-
vehicles exceeding the speed limit and to create a more
ers can be lifted and replaced with minimal impact.
livable community (Van Dam and Taylor 2009).

Noise Mitigation Health and Safety

Noise from pavement construction or maintenance, The first concern of any transportation agency is to
or noise generated through tire-pavement interac- provide roadways that are safe for the user and the com-
tion, should be considered in the quest for more munity. This means that, among many other factors, the
sustainable pavements, as it is known that elevated surface must provide adequate surface friction while
noise levels can cause physiological and psychological minimizing splash and spray, must not exhibit potentially
impairments in living creatures (Hogan 2010, Pass- hazardous distresses (potholes, faulting, blowups), and
chier-Vermeer and Passchier 2000). must provide enhanced night-time and poor-weather vis-
ibility for the safety of drivers and pedestrians (Van Dam
In urban environments, sound barriers are built to
and Taylor 2009).
protect surrounding communities from noise gener-
ated by traffic, particularly on fast-moving express- As mentioned in Chapter 6, urban heat islands contrib-
ways. Yet, through care at the pavement design stage, ute to lower quality local air and water quality, which can
the need for such barriers may be eliminated if an be mitigated by the use of pavements with greater solar
effective noise-mitigation solution, such as use of qui- reflectance, such as concrete.
eter pavement surface textures, is employed.

Surface texture is desirable to increase friction and Reduced User Delays

enhance safety, yet it has been shown to have a There is a reason that most major metropolitan radio
significant impact on noise generation through tire- programs provide a traffic report every morning. Traffic
pavement interaction (Rasmussen et al. 2007). The and delays due to traffic are huge financial, environ-
relationship between noise and community distur- mental, and social issues in urban environments. Time
bance adjacent to roadways is not new, and pavement wasted due to congestion during maintenance and recon-
engineers have invested considerable effort to lessen struction activities increases the stress of drivers, poten-
noise generated from the interaction of the tire with tially negatively impacting their health. Moreover, traffic
the pavement surface. delays lead to an increase in user costs.
Rasmussen et al. (2008) conducted research to iden-
tify factors contributing to the objectionable noise
and developed pavement-noise mitigation strategies
that result in safe and quiet concrete riding surfaces.
Specifications have been developed (Rasmussen et al.
2011) to reduce tire-pavement noise, including the
use of drag-textured or longitudinally tined surfaces
(Figure 9.6) and diamond grinding including the Next
Generation Concrete Surface. Figure 9.6 A potentially quiet surface (viewed from
the side)

82 Ch. 9. CONCRETE PAVEMENTS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
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be constructed to slow traffic through busy pedestrian
crete and Asphalt Cement Concrete Pavement. PCA R&D
areas by channelizing. Pervious concrete pavements are
Serial No. 2068. Skokie, IL: Portland Cement Associa-
commonly used to address storm water runoff in the
tion. (;
urban environment, whereas the use of photocatalytic
accessed August 24, 2011.
materials holds the promise of treating certain air pol-
lutants. Long-life concrete pavements also reduce the Gates, A. 2011. MoDOT Keeps Construction Project
costs of traffic delays over their life cycle by being easily Environmentally-Friendly. MoDOT St. Louis District
maintained in a smooth condition using techniques Press Release Page. April 22. (
that have minimal impact on traffic operations. In com- stlouis/news_and_information/District6News.shtml?ac
bination, the properties inherent in concrete make it an tion=displaySSI&newsId=80061; accessed August 24,
ideal, sustainable choice for constructing pavements in 2011)
an urban environment.

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clopedia of Earth. Cutler J. Cleveland, Ed. Sidney ing Concrete Pavement Surfaces. TPF-5(139). Ames, IA:
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mental Information Coalition, National Council for State University.
Science and the Environment. [First published in
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ment Noise. Tech Brief. Ames, IA: National Concrete
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Lauber, J., M.E. Morris, P. Ulloa, and F Hasselriis. 2006. Rose, L., H. Akbari, and H. Taha. 2003. Characterizing
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Long Distance Disposal of Municipal Waste. Presented politan Houston, Texas. LBNL-51448. Lawrence Berkeley
at Air & Waste Management Association Conference, National Laboratory.
New Orleans, LA. (
Schaffer, D. 2009. Concrete That Cleans Itself and the
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Science and the Environment). [First published in the
Tennis, Paul D., Michael L. Leming, and David J.
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Skokie, IL: Portland Cement Association.
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Mackun, P. and S. Wilson. 2011. Population Distribu-
tocatalytic Cements. (;
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Commerce: U.S. Census Bureau. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 2009.
Reducing Urban Heat Islands: Compendium of Strate-
National Ready Mix Concrete Association (NRMCA).
giesCool Pavements. Draft. Washington, DC: U.S.
2009. Pervious Concrete Pavement: An Overview.
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vesCompendium.pdf; accessed August 2011)
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Van Dam, T., and P. Taylor. 2009. Building Sustainable
Passchier-Vermeer, W., and W.F. Passchier. 2000. Noise
Pavements With Concrete. Ames, IA: National Concrete
exposure and public health. Environ. Health Perspect.
Pavement Technology Center, Iowa State University.
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Portland Cement Association (PCA). 2011. Pervious ing.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
Concrete. Skokie, IL: PCA. (;
Wathne, L.. 2010. Sustainability Opportunities With
accessed August 2, 2011)
Pavements: Are We Focusing on the Right Stuff? 11th
Rasmussen, R.O., R. Bernhard, U. Sandberg, and E. International Symposium on Concrete Roads. Seville,
Mu. 2007. The Little Book of Quieter Pavements. FHWA- Spain.
IF-08-004. Washington, DC: FHWA.
Marceau, Medgar L., and Martha G. VanGeem. 2007.
Rasmussen, R.O., S.I. Garber, G.J. Fick, T.R. Ferragut, Solar Reflectance of Concretes for LEED Sustainable Site
and P.D. Wiegand. 2008. How to Reduce Tire-Pavement Credit: Heat Island Effect. SN2982. Skokie, IL: PCA.

84 Ch. 9. CONCRETE PAVEMENTS IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Chapter 10
Martha VanGeem
Emily Lorenz
Tom Van Dam

It is well known that if progress toward a goal is not the life-cycle assessment (LCA) approach as the path
measured, the goal is not likely to be met. It is essen- to more fully quantify the environmental and social
tial that the sustainable features of pavements be factors contributing to the sustainability of pavements,
assessed and quantified to recognize improvements and discusses other, emerging approaches as well.
and guide innovation. These tools should be used primarily to help guide
users; they should not be used for material selection.
Previous chapters outlined the details about what
sustainability is and how concrete pavements can This is an area of fast-paced innovation, with new
be designed and constructed more sustainably. This and updated tools constantly emerging. Some of the
chapter explains how the sustainability of concrete tools reviewed are still undergoing development and
pavement can be assessed and what tools are avail- are thus likely to change in the coming year. As such,
able to assist during the assessment process. It reviews readers are encouraged to obtain the most recent infor-
current approaches to assessing pavement sustainabil- mation regarding the tools discussed before employing
ity, including the emerging rating systems. It presents them.
1. Why Assessments are a sensitivity analysis should be conducted using a
Important range of discount rates to determine how sensitive the
outcome is to the choice of this value.
Many product and service manufacturers make claims
about the sustainability or greenness of their prod- An LCCA is performed in units of dollars and is equal
ucts and processes. It can be difficult for an owner, to the construction cost plus the present value of
agency, consultant, contractor, or specifier to sort future maintenance, repair, rehabilitation, and replace-
through these claims without an accurate, repeatable, ment costs over the life of the pavement. Using this
and objective system to assist them in their selection. widely accepted method, it is possible to compare the
economics of different pavement alternatives that may
As with any engineering challenge, such as balanc- have different cash flow factors but that provide a simi-
ing the three tenets of sustainability, tools are avail- lar level of service.
able to assist. In order to make the most-informed
design decisions with regard to sustainability, one must Quite often, pavement designs with the lowest first
employ a tool or tools that allow comparison of differ- costs for new construction will require higher costs
ent design choices. The tools presented in this chapter during the pavements life. So, even with their lesser
vary in terms of complexity and level of detail, and it is first cost, these pavements will possibly have a greater
important to understand the strengths and weaknesses life-cycle cost. Conversely, pavements built to last
of each in order to make the best design decision for using enhanced structure and very durable materi-
a given project. The intent of presenting the different als often have a greater first cost but a lower life-cycle
environmental-impact tools is to advance the state of cost. Transportation agencies are familiar with the
the practice. benefits of a lower life-cycle cost, and each state high-
way agency is required to do some type of LCCA when
using federal funds to support large rehabilitation or
2. Economic and Environmental reconstruction projects. Volatility in the cost of oil will
Analyses affect the competitiveness of concrete on a first-cost
basis (MIT 2011).
No one tool is currently available that simultaneously
considers economic, environmental, and equity (soci- The life-cycle cost software available from the FHWA
etal) impacts. Economic impacts are often assessed (RealCost 2011) provides economic analysis of
separately through life-cycle cost analysis (LCCA). agency and user costs during a pavements service life.
Environmental impacts can be examined through a Examples of agency costs include initial engineer-
life-cycle assessment (LCA). ing, contract administration, and construction costs;
maintenance, repair, rehabilitation, and administrative
costs; and end-of-life costs such as salvage, residual, or
Economic Analysis remaining-service-life value. User costs include vehicle
An LCCA is a powerful economic decision support operation (normal versus work-zone) costs, delay
tool used in the pavement type and material selection costs, and crash costs (FHWA 1998).
process. In an LCCA, the expenditures incurred over
An LCCA is relevant only if equivalent pavement
the lifetime of a particular pavement are accounted for.
structures are being compared (for example, the same
Costs at any given time are discounted to a fixed date,
service life and design load). National standards are
based on assumed rates of inflation and the time-value
available for pavements to ensure design equivalency.
of money, using a discount rate. The most common
In addition, the design life of the pavement alterna-
discount rate used in recent years is 4 percent, but
tives should be stated and applied consistently during
persuasive arguments are being made that this rate
an LCCA. Analysis periods typically range around 40
should be lower, based on the fact that transportation
agencies do not have the option of investing money
that is not spent and that the level of future funding is There is a relationship between LCCA and environ-
uncertain. Regardless of the discount rate that is used, mental impacts in that some environmental benefits

86 Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
can be converted to a monetary value. For example, A full set of impactsincluding energy use, land use,
lower energy use can result in lesser operating costs. resource use, climate change, health effects, acidifica-
tion, toxicity, and moreshould be evaluated as part
of the LCA.
Environmental Assessment
One of the best ways to assess the environmental (and An LCA involves a time-consuming manipulation of
to some extent the societal) impacts of a product or large quantities of data. A model such as SimaPro (Pr
process is to use life-cycle assessment (LCA). Unlike 2011) provides data for common materials and options
LCCA, LCA does not account for environmental for selecting LCA impacts. The Portland Cement
impact in monetary units but instead in terms of mass Association publishes reports with life-cycle data on
or energy flows in and out of a set boundary. Whereas cement and concrete (Marceau et al. 2006, 2008).
LCCA accrues financial impacts in terms of dollars, Several organizations have proposed how an LCA
LCA determines environmental impacts in terms of should be conducted. Organizations such as the
energy or mass use (including waste and emissions International Organization for Standardization (ISO),
generated). the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chem-
An LCA is an environmental assessment of a product istry (SETAC), and the U.S. Environmental Protection
over its life cycle. An LCA examines all aspects of a Agency (EPA) have documented standard procedures
products life cyclefrom the first stages of acquir- for conducting an LCA. These procedures are gener-
ing (whether harvested or extracted) raw materials ally consistent with each other and are all scientific,
from nature to transporting and ultimately processing transparent, and repeatable. As defined by ISO 14044,
these raw materials into a product (such as a pave- the four primary steps in an LCA are (ISO 2006) the
ment), using the product, and ultimately recycling it or following:
disposing of it back into nature. Conducting an LCA Goal and scope definition
of a concrete pavement is necessary to evaluate the
environmental impact of the pavement over its entire Life-cycle inventory (LCI) analysis
life. As will be discussed, green rating systems and
programs that focus only on a single criterionsuch as Life-cycle impact assessment (LCIA)
recycled content or CO2or phase of the pavements Interpretation and conclusions
lifesuch as constructionprovide only a partial
snapshot of the pavements environmental impact. Definitions related to energy, and reporting of energy
use in LCA, are controversial and thus are typically
By definition, an LCA of a pavement includes environ- reported in terms of primary energy and feedstock
mental effects due to the following factors: energy. A definition of feedstock energy is heat of
Extraction of materials and fuel used for energy combustion of a raw material input that is not used
as an energy source to a product system, expressed in
Manufacture of components terms of higher heating value or lower heating value
(ISO 2006). Primary energy is energy embodied in
Transportation of materials and components natural resources prior to undergoing any human-
Assembly and construction made conversions or transformations (Kydes and
Cleveland 2007).
Operation, including maintenance, repair, and
user impacts such as energy for lighting and traffic
emissions Goal and ScopeSetting the Boundary
The usefulness of an LCA or LCI depends on where
Demolition, disposal, recycling, and reuse of the the boundaries of a product are drawn. A common
pavement at the end of its functional or useful life approach is to consider all the environmental flows
from cradle to grave. It is during this phase that cut-off

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY 87
criteria are established for input and output to the buildings, nor the heating and cooling of such build-
boundary that will be quantified in the LCI stage. LCA ings. This is generally acceptable if their materials,
standards recommend establishing cut-off criteria for embodied energy, and associated emissions account for
mass, energy, and environmental significance. If the less than 1 to 5 percent of those in the process being
results of any two LCA analyses are to be compared, it studied. For example, LCA guidelines indicate that
is critical that the boundaries are the same. inputs to a process do not need to be included in an
LCI if they are a small percentage of the total mass of
During the goal and scope phase, the impact categories the processed materials or product (typically less than
to be assessed are determined, as are the types and 1 to 5 percent); they do not contribute significantly
sources of data that will be collected. LCA standards to a toxic emission; and they do not have a signifi-
also outline data quality requirements, and how to cant associated energy consumption. An LCI does not
determine whether an independent, third-party review include labor.
is required.

Life-Cycle Impact Analysis (LCIA)

Life-Cycle Inventory (LCI)
Mass and energy flowing through the system bound-
An LCI is the second stage of an LCA. An LCI accounts ary are assigned to different impact categories during
for and quantifies all the individual environmental the LCIA phase. Impact categories can be classified as
flows to and from a product throughout its life cycle. endpoints or midpoints. There is debate over where
It consists of the materials and energy needed to make some impact categories fall. LCA practitioners gener-
and use a product and the emissions to air, land, and ally agree on the correlation of LCI data and midpoint
water associated with making and using that product impact categories; endpoint categories typically require
as illustrated in Figure 10.1. that more assumptions be made between data col-
An upstream profile can be thought of as a sepa- lected during the LCI phase and the final damage to
rate LCI that is itself an ingredient to a product. For the ecosystem.
example, the upstream profile of cement is essentially SETAC published a document in 1999 that attempted
an LCI of cement, which can be imported into an to clarify impact categories and impact indicators. It
LCI of concrete. To get the most useful information listed midpoints such as climate change, ecotoxicity,
out of an LCI, a material should be considered in the eutrophication, and land use. Some of the endpoints
context of its end use. The LCI of concrete itself can listed were loss of resources, damage to humans, and
then be imported into an LCI of a product, such as a damage to wildlife and plants.
Though endpoints may be less accurate, some are still
The LCI of materials generally does not consider important to monitor during an LCA. According to
embodied energy and emissions associated with ASHRAE 189.1, results of an LCA should include the
construction of manufacturing plant equipment and following impact indicators (ASHRAE 2009):

Materials N2O
Energy Air
Land SO2
Water VOC

Extracting Disposal
Processing Operation and Maintenance
Transporting Assembly

Figure 10.1 An LCI accounts for all materials and energy needed to make and use a product, and the
emissions to air, land, and water associated with making and using that product

88 Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Acidification of some of the models used to predict the endpoint
impact categories listed previously are often not as
Climate change
accurate as those used to predict the midpoint indica-
Ecotoxicity tors such as energy use or CO2 equivalents. Performing
an LCA without considering these endpoint impact
indicators does not assess the full environmental
Human-health effects impact of a product, design, or system. Nonetheless,
the following case study illustrates how a limited LCA
Land use (or habitat alteration)
evaluation can be used to significantly reduce the envi-
Ozone layer depletion ronmental impacts of a given pavement type through
improved design and materials choices.
Resource use
Smog The Kansas Two-Lift Concrete Pavement Demonstra-
tion Project was constructed on I-70 near Salina, Kan-
Weighting can be conducted during this stage of an sas, in 2008 (National Concrete Pavement Technol-
LCA, but it is generally preferred to list results by ogy Center 2008). The Right Environment of Austin,
impact category. According to ISO 14044, weighting Texas, conducted an LCA to compare a traditionally
shall not be used in LCA studies intended to be used constructed pavement section (Alternative No. 1) to
in comparative assertions intended to be disclosed to the as-built two-lift pavement (Alternative No. 2). A
the public (ISO 2006). third alternative, an optimized two-lift design using
higher levels of recycled and industrial byproduct
material (RIBM), was also considered in the LCA. The
basic sections evaluated are illustrated in Figure 10.2,
Conclusions of the LCA are presented and analyzed and the mixture designs are presented in Table 10.1.
during the interpretation and conclusion phase. Dur-
ing this portion of the LCA, the practitioner identifies It is clear that Alternative No. 2, which is the as-built
any significant issues from the LCI and LCIA phase. two-lift pavement section, had a number of innova-
Finally, completeness, sensitivity, and consistency checks tive features beyond the use of the two-lift design. The
are performed to evaluate the quality of the analysis. 40-mm top-lift surface concrete used a wear-resistant
imported rhyolite coarse aggregate, but the bottom
lift concrete used locally available, non-wear-resistant
LCA Case Study carbonate coarse aggregate. To obtain similar wear
Although more owners and product manufacturers resistance in Alternative No. 1, the conventional design
are undertaking LCA to make design decisions, few would have to use imported rhyolite coarse aggregate
reports are available to the public. Reasons for this lack for all of the concrete in the pavement, adding cost
of available data include concerns about disclosure of and environmental burden.
proprietary information and unfavorable interpretation
of results by competitors and decision makers. In the In addition, Alternative No. 2 used a high-volume fly
following case study, a full range of impact categories ash mixture for the cement-treated base (CTB), reduc-
is evaluated. Other studies, such as that conducted ing the portland cement content significantly from
by the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute (Athena what would be present in a conventional CTB as is
2006), considered only two impact categories. used in Alternative No. 1.

It is strongly recommended that LCA practitioners Alternative No. 3 presents some additional changes
evaluate, at a minimum, a range of endpoint impact that could have been used to improve the environ-
categories including acidification, climate change, eco- mental footprint of Alternative No. 2 with no expected
toxicity, eutrophication, human-health effects, land use negative impact on pavement performance. Although
(or habitat alteration), ozone layer depletion, resource the surface lift in Alternatives No. 2 and No. 3 were
use, and smog creation. It is noted that the accuracy the same, the bottom lift in Alternative No. 3 was

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY 89
further optimized from an environmental perspective, be available; transporting recycled concrete aggregates
replacing the locally extracted carbonate coarse aggre- long distances actually would have negative environ-
gate with a recycled concrete aggregate obtained on mental impact due to the required transportation).
site (note this requires that sufficient recycled concrete In addition, the amount of portland cement in the
bottom lift was reduced from 548 lb/yd3 to 376 lb/yd3,
and 94 lb/yd3 of fly ash was used, resulting in an over-
all reduction in the cementitious content in Alternative
No. 3 compared to Alternative No. 2.

In all cases, pavement performance over the life cycle

was assumed to be identical for the three alternatives.

The LCA results for the three alternatives are presented

in Figure 10.3. As is common with the presentation of
the LCA results, they are normalized for each endpoint
impact category with the worse performing alternative
being set at 100 percent and the remaining alternatives
presented as a percent reduction. For example, con-
sidering the global warming potential (GWP) of each
alternative, Alternative No. 1 is the worst, Alternative
No. 2 reduces the impact in this category to approxi-
mately 87 percent of Alternative No. 1, and Alterna-
tive No. 3 has a GWP impact that is approximately 65
percent of Alternative No. 1.

In all categories (other than non-hazardous waste),

Alternative No. 1 is the poorest choice from an envi-
ronmental perspective. Alternative No. 2 shows
significant improvement (greater than 10 percent), and
Alternative No. 3 shows even further improvement. It
can be seen how such an analysis can be used in com-
bination with design and materials choices to optimize
a concrete pavement system, significantly lowering its
Figure 10.2 Three alternatives used in a limited LCA environmental impact while ensuring equal or better
to determine environmental impact of design and long-term performance.
material choices

Table 10.1 Relevant Mixture Design Features in the Kansas Two-lift LCA Evaluation
Layer Alternative No. 1 Alternative No. 2 Alternative No. 3
438 lb/yd cement
438 lb/yd3 cement
This alternative had only a 110 lb/yd3 fly ash
PCC Top Lift single PCC lift composed 110 lb/yd3 fly ash
Imported rhyolite coarse
of the following: Imported rhyolite coarse aggregate
548 lb/yd3 cement
Imported rhyolite 548 lb/yd3 cement 376 lb/yd3 cement
PCC Bottom Lift coarse aggregate Local carbonate coarse 94 lb/yd3 fly ash
aggregate Recycled concrete coarse aggregate
78 lb/yd3 cement
172 lb/yd3 cement 78 lb/yd3 cement
Cement-Treated 94 lb/yd3 fly ash
Local carbonate coarse 94 lb/yd3 fly ash
Base Recycled concrete coarse
aggregate Recycled concrete coarse aggregate

90 Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Work continues to develop user-friendly LCA tools for York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT)
use in considering the entire pavement life cycle. Once for the certification of project designs before they go
such tools are available, transportation agencies will to bid. The objectives of GreenLITES are the following
have a mechanism to more fully consider the life-cycle (NYSDOT 2010):
impacts of design and materials choices.
Recognize and increase the awareness of the
sustainable methods and practices already incorpo-
3. Rating Systems rated into the project design
Currently, in an attempt to consider sustainable pave- Expand the use of these and other innovative alter-
ment practices, a number of rating systems are emerg- natives which will contribute to improving trans-
ing. Rating systems will often use elements of the portation sustainability
LCCA and LCA, integrated with other environmental
and equity impacts, to assign points to alternatives A self-certification program, GreenLITES allows the
in an attempt to assess overall sustainability. Two of project team to evaluate a projects sustainability before
the most widely known rating systems, GreenLITES releasing it for bid. Based on evaluation of 26 recently
and Greenroads, are reviewed below, but there are completed designs, certification levels are scored and
a number of similar systems in existence and new are given in Table 10.2.
systems continue to emerge, including the FHWAs
INVEST Sustainable Highways Self-Evaluation Tool
Table 10.2 GreenLITES Certification Levels
( and the Institute of
Certification Level Point Range Percentile Range
Sustainable Infrastructures envisionTM rating system
( Both of these are Non-certified 0 14 < 33%

based on the Greenroads system. Certified 15 29 33 - 67%

Silver 30 44 67 - 90%
GreenLITES Gold 45 59 90 - 98%

GreenLITES (Leadership in Transportation and Envi- Evergreen 60 and greater 98 and greater
ronmental Sustainability) was developed by the New

Figure 10.3 Results of the LCA of the three Kansas two-lift alternatives (from the Right Environment, Austin, Texas)

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY 91
The project design elements are compared to the using local materials to the greatest extent possible to
objectives and credit descriptions for each of the fol- minimize haul distances. The following subcategories
lowing five GreenLITES categories: are included:

Sustainable sites Reuse of materials

Water quality Recycled content
Materials and resources Locally provided material
Energy and atmosphere Bioengineering techniques
Innovation/unlisted Hazardous material minimization

Sustainable Sites Energy and Atmosphere

This category focuses on the location of the project This categorys goal is to minimize climate change
and includes measures that can protect and enhance impacts through energy conservation and efficiency. It
the landscapes ability to regulate climate, provide supports air-quality improvement projects and encour-
cleaner air and water, and improve quality of life. This ages car pooling, mass transit, and non-motorized
follows NYSDOTs policy to select the best available transportation. The subcategories included are the
alternative based on program / project goals and objec- following:
tives, public involvement, and overall sustainability.
The following subcategories are included: Improved traffic flow

Alignment selection Reduced electrical consumption

Context-sensitive solutions Reduced petroleum consumption

Land use/community planning Improved bicycle and pedestrian facilities

Protect, enhance, or restore wildlife habitat Noise abatement

Protect, plant, or mitigate for removal of trees and Stray light reduction
plant communities
Water Quality
This category gives credit to designs that further
This category seeks to protect bodies of water by GreenLITES strategies or to significant innovations
improving water quality and reducing storm water in the project related to sustainability. Each agency is
runoff. The design will be evaluated through the fol- responsible for identifying what is important to them
lowing subcategories: and will likely have different criteria.
Storm water management including volume and
quality Limitations

Reduced run-off and associated pollutants by treat- Many of the point categories lack specific amounts or
ing storm water runoff through best management levels of improvement required to receive the desig-
practices (BMPs) nated number of points; the points are followed by a
list of items, and it is not clear how many of them are
required to obtain the points. It is also unclear if the
Materials and Resources
NYSDOT has specific improvement percentages or
This category encourages the reduction of waste by material use rates on which they will base the point
reusing and recycling materials in beneficial ways and rewards.

92 Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Specific examples of potential limitations related to use Greenroads applies only to roadway design and
with concrete pavements include the following: construction. The mandatory best practicesProject
Requirementsprovide the minimum level of sustain-
Re-use of materials (M-1 general) This does not able activities and each must be met as part of this
include concrete mix designs which optimize alter- metric. The voluntary practicesVoluntary Credits
native materials (such as fly ash, silica fume, etc.) to are the optional attributes which show how the project
meet the pavement or structure requirements. has moved toward a truly sustainable endeavor.
Reduce electrical consumption (E-2) This rewards For a roadway project to be evaluated, the project team
projects that utilize low energy-consuming lighting overseeing the work will document how the Project
equipment but doesnt mention the use of concrete Requirements have been met and which Voluntary
pavements which may require less total lighting due Credits are being pursued. The Greenroads team
to its reflectivity. Also, although the section is titled verifies the application and the point totals and assigns
Reduce Electrical Consumption, it does not con- the certification level. The levels include those shown
sider electrical consumption during the extraction, in Table 10.3.
manufacture, or construction phases for materials.

Reduce petroleum consumption (E-3) This includes Project Requirements

project aspects that reduce petroleum consumption
of the project including park-and-ride areas, public The Project Requirements are as follow:
transportation connections, and design attributes Environmental review process, which requires the
that will limit maintenance fuel use. This item does project team to perform an environmental review of
not mention the reduction of vehicle fuel use by the project
riding on concrete pavements. Also, although the
section is titled Reduce Petroleum Consumption, Life-cycle cost analysis performed according to the
it does not consider petroleum consumption during Federal Highway Administrations Life-Cycle Cost
the extraction, manufacture, or construction phases Analysis in Pavement Design (FHWA 1998)
for materials.
Life-cycle inventory of final pavement design
(reporting global warming potential and total
Greenroads energy only) using PaLATE v2.0 (Consortium
Greenroads attempts to measure performance of on Green Design and Manufacturing 2011) or
sustainable roadway design and construction. The approved equal
performance metric was developed by a team headed Quality control (QC) plan that lists responsibilities
by the University of Washington (UW) and CH2M and qualifications of QC personnel and QC proce-
HILL (Muench et al. 2011). The Greenroads pro- dures during construction
gram attempts to quantify the sustainable attributes of
a roadway project and is a tool for the following: Noise mitigation plan needs to be established and
implemented during construction
Defining project attributes that contribute to road-
way sustainability
Accounting for sustainability-related activities Table 10.3 Greenroads Certification Levels
Certification Project Voluntary
Communicating sustainable project attributes Level Requirements Credits

Managing and improving roadway sustainability Certified All 32 42

Silver All 43 53
Certifying projects
Gold All 54 63
The Greenroads program has two major best-
Evergreen All 64 and greater
practice categories, mandatory and voluntary.

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY 93
Waste management plan needs to be established Site vegetation
and implemented during construction
Habitat restoration
Pollution prevention plan for storm water that Ecological connectivity
meets EPA Construction General Permit or local
requirements, whichever is more stringent Light pollution

Low-impact development hydrologic analysis must The access and equity subcategories are as follow:
be considered for storm water management in the
Safety audit
Intelligent transportation systems
Pavement management system to maintain and
operate a pavement including evaluation and docu- Context-sensitive solutions
mentation of preservation actions Traffic emissions reduction
Site maintenance plan for roadway maintenance, Pedestrian access
storm water system, vegetation, snow and ice, traf-
fic control infrastructure, and cleaning Bicycle access
Transit access and high-occupancy vehicle (HOV)
Educational outreach to the community as part of
the operation of the roadway
Scenic views
Voluntary Credits Cultural outreach
The optional Voluntary Credits are the attributes The construction activities subcategories are:
which show how the project has moved beyond the
minimum requirements. There are 37 voluntary prac- Quality management system
tices which are scored from one to five points each
Environmental training
for a total of 108 points. Custom credits are available
per the approval of the Greenroads program for up Site recycling plan
to an additional ten points. The voluntary credits are
Fossil fuel reduction
grouped into the following categories:
Equipment emissions reduction
Environment and water
Paving emissions reduction
Access and equity
Water use tracking
Construction activities
Contractor warranty
Materials and resources
The materials and resources subcategories are the
Pavement technologies
Custom credit
Life-cycle assessment
The environment and water subcategories are as follow:
Pavement reuse
Environmental management system Earthwork balance
Runoff flow control Recycled materials
Runoff quality control Regional materials
Storm water cost analysis Energy efficiency

94 Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
The pavement technologies subcategories are the credit with 13 in. of concrete or 14 in. of HMA. The
following: validity of this approach is highly questionable.

Long-life pavement Specific examples of potential limitations related to use

with concrete pavements include the following:
Permeable pavement
Warm-mix asphalt Life-cycle inventory (PR-3) The project team is
required to complete the PaLATE Version 2.0
Cool pavement software tool for the project and report the total
Quiet pavement energy use and global warming potential in CO2
equivalents. Other life-cycle software tools may be
Pavement performance tracking used if they output the total energy use and global
warming potential by means of a transparent inter-
Greenroads custom credit subcategory Recognize[s]
face which clearly references data sources. Overall,
innovative sustainable roadway design and construc-
more impacts than just energy and CO2 should be
tion practices.
reported in a life-cycle inventory.

Light pollution (EW-8) This category rewards

projects that use lamps that prevent light pollution
The Greenroads program recognizes some limita- but doesnt mention the use of concrete pavements,
tions in the system such as improvements in the which may require less total lighting due to its
upstream supply chain that may not be captured. For reflectivity.
example, the production and manufacture of materials
are not explicitly considered outside of the life-cycle Paving emissions reduction (CA-6) Although this
inventories and assessments. category is a benefit to worker safety and the envi-
ronment around HMA paving operations, it may
The Greenroads program also does not explicitly be appropriate for concrete paving operations to
include additional roadway structures such as bridges, receive points because they do not have these air
tunnels, walls, or other structures in the analysis. The emissions that need to be controlled. Greenroads
program also does not explicitly include non-roadway should be encouraged to allow an alternative for
structures such as luminaires, barriers, and walls. Nor which concrete pavements can earn credit.
does the program evaluate long-term maintenance
beyond what is planned in various requirements and Energy efficiency (MR-6) This category rewards
voluntary credits. projects that use low energy consuming equipment
but doesnt mention the use of concrete pavement,
The long-life pavement credit does not accurately which may require less total lighting due to its
represent long life for either concrete or asphalt pave- reflectivity.
ments, focusing exclusively on pavement thickness
and ignoring the multitude of other design and con-
struction details that truly produce pavements of long 4. Summary
life. Further, it ignores regional and climatic differences
Assessing pavement sustainability is an essential ele-
which play a strong role in determining what con-
ment in making pavements more sustainable, as it is
tributes to long pavement life. Of particular concern
well known if something is not measured, it will not
from the perspective of the concrete paving industry
get done. Although the concept of assessing sustain-
is that according to the long-life pavement credit, for
ability is not difficult, in practice, it is very complex.
a lifetime equivalent single-axle load (ESAL) less than
The use of LCCA to determine life-cycle economic
500,000, the Greenroads program says that a 7-in.
costs is a mature and accepted approach to compare
thick concrete pavement is equivalent to a 6-in. thick
alternative pavement designs. Environmental impacts
hot-mix asphalt (HMA) pavement. Over 50,000,000
can be assessed using an LCA, but readily accessible
ESALs, pavements qualify for the long-life pavement

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY 95
tools are not available, and gaps in the data and Marceau, M.L., M.A. Nisbet, and M.G. VanGeem.
knowledge limit this approach at the current time. 2006. Life Cycle Inventory of Portland Cement Manu-
facture, R&D Serial No. 2095b. Skokie, IL: Portland
Emerging pavement sustainability rating systems Cement Association.
provide a means to currently assess pavement sustain-
ability, but limitations that exist in these systems mean Marceau, M.L., M.A. Nisbet, and M.G. VanGeem.
that they should be used to help guide users in mak- 2007. Life Cycle Inventory of Portland Cement Concrete.
ing their practices more sustainable but should not be R&D Serial No. 3011. Skokie, IL: Portland Cement
used in absolute terms to determine which pavement Association.
alternative is more sustainable compared to another.
These tools should be used to advance the state of the Muench, S.T., J.L. Anderson, J.P. Hatfield, J.R. Koes-
practice, not for material approval or selection. ter, M. Sderlund, et al. 2011. Greenroads Manual
v1.5.J.L. Anderson, C.D. Weiland, and S.T. Muench,
Eds. Seattle, WA: University of Washington. (www.
5. References and Resources; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air- New York State Department of Transportation (NYS-
Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). 2009. Standard for DOT). 2010. GreenLITES Project Design Certification
the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings. ANSI/ Program.
ASHRAE/USGBC/IES Standard 189.1-2009. Atlanta,
GA: ASHRAE. PR Consultants. 2011. SimaPro 6. Amersfoot, the
Athena Institute. 2006. A Life Cycle Perspective on
Concrete and Asphalt Roadways: Embodied Primary Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry
Energy and Global Warming Potential. (www.athenasmi. (SETAC), SETAC-Europe: Second Working Group on
org/publications/docs/Athena_Update_Report_LCA_ LCIA (WIA-2). 1999. Best Available Practice Regarding
PCCP_vs_HMA_Final_Document_Sept_2006.pdf; Impact Categories and Category Indicators in Life Cycle
accessed Dec. 5, 2011) Impact Assessment. Brussels, Belgium.

Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). 1998. National Concrete Pavement Technology Center. 2008.
Life-Cycle Cost Analysis in Pavement DesignIn Search of Various resources on Two-Lift Concrete Paving. Ames,
Better Investment Decisions. FHWA-SA-98-079. Wash- IA: Iowa State University (
ington, D.C.: FHWA. ( ects/two-lift-paving/index.cfm; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
FHWA/013017.pdf; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)
Consortium on Green Design and Manufacturing.
International Organization for Standardization (ISO). 2011. PaLATE: Pavement Life-cycle Assessment Tool
2006. Environmental ManagementLife Cycle Assess- for Environmental and Economic Effects. University of
mentRequirements and Guidelines. ISO 14044. California-Berkeley (
Geneva, Switzerland. palate.html; accessed Dec. 5, 2011)

Kydes, A., and C. Cleveland. 2007. Primary energy. Santero, N., A. Loijos, M. Akbarian, and J. Ochsen-
In Encyclopedia of Earth. Cutler J. Cleveland, Ed. Wash- dorf. 2011. Methods, Impacts, and Opportunities in the
ington, D.C.: Environmental Information Coalition, Concrete Pavement Life Cycle. Concrete Sustainability
National Council for Science and the Environment. Hub, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
[First published in the Encyclopedia of Earth August
14, 2007; last revised August 14, 2007]. (http://www.; accessed April 15,

96 Ch. 10. ASSESSMENT OF PAVEMENT SUSTAINABILITY Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Chapter 11
Peter Taylor
Tom Van Dam

Are pavements perfectly sustainable? No. Like any sustainability is the need to identify the parameters
other infrastructure system, their construction and critical to success and understand how these param-
maintenance consume nonrenewable resources, gener- eters may be modified in such a way that significant
ate waste, and consume energy. More significantly, and continued improvement can be achieved.
users of modern vehicles have a significant negative
environmental and social impact as they travel on In this regard, concrete pavements have a good story
any pavement, with respect to such aspects as energy to tell, as they have been effectively used for genera-
consumption, emissions, and noise. Pavements also tions to support economic and social good over the
interact directly with the environment and society, life cycle and provide many opportunities for further
impacting such things as local temperatures and sur- improving their sustainability in the future.
face run-off. The first 10 chapters of this publication define sus-
On the other hand, modern civilization would be tainability concepts and how they may be considered
inconceivable without the ability to move goods, when designing, building, and maintaining concrete
people, and expertise quickly and affordably over large pavements. They also identify a number of easily
distances via surface transportation. implementable strategies that can be employed to
improve the sustainability of concrete pavements,
Therefore, to establish a more sustainable pavement plus the parameters and tools for measuring these
system, both the negative and positive economic, envi- improvements. This chapter briefly summarizes this
ronmental, and social impacts must be considered and information and provides an overview of innovative
alternatives sought that minimize the negative while approaches.
maximizing the positive. Fundamental to advancing
1. Review Account for human needs and values while consid-
ering the environmental setting in which the pave-
Sustainability-related concepts related to pavements
ment will be constructed.
can be applied in practical and holistic ways in every
stage of a concrete pavement: design, materials selec- Make engineering decisions that will ensure that the
tion, construction, use, renewal, and end-of-life pavement will perform as desired for the intended
recycling. Urban environments provide unique oppor- life (likely 40 years or more). Design features of
tunities for implementing concrete pavement solutions long-life concrete pavements include the following:
that enhance sustainability. Determining the success
Adequate thickness
of these strategies requires a systematic approach to
selecting and measuring performance criteria. Strong, erosion-resistant bases
Doweled transverse joints, or continuously
Pavement Sustainability Concepts reinforced concrete pavement where volume of
traffic requires them
To date, decision making by pavement professionals
has largely been based on consideration of the bottom- Appropriate materials and proportioning for
line, which was understood in purely economic terms. durability, economy, and reduced environmental
To advance sustainability, the bottom line must be impact
expanded to include environmental and societal terms. Timely maintenance and rehabilitation
Sustainability is also much broader than the applica-
tion of a number of individual activities but needs to Choose systems and approaches that will have
be approached system-wide. minimum economic, environmental, and social
cost, without compromising engineering quality.
Essential to understanding sustainability is an under-
standing of how the current consumption-based Design for what is needed. Overdesign is wasteful,
industrial system negatively impacts social systems. but under-design is even more wasteful because
The concept of a regenerative, circular economy longevity of the system may be compromised.
should be adopted, along with greater use of renew- Consider the impact of alternative approaches and
able resources and a reduction in accumulating waste. conduct sensitivity analyses.
Ideally, the system will ultimately mimic nature, in
which the concept of waste is eliminated and all waste Innovation that meets these goals should be encouraged.
becomes raw material for another process.

Sustainability also requires the adoption of a life-cycle Selecting Materials

perspective, in which the economic, environmental, The materials used in making paving concrete have
and social benefits and costs of any product or service a significant impact on the sustainability of the pave-
are considered over its entire life, requiring a cradle- ment because their production and transport to the
to-cradle approach in which the end of life is part of a
site have relatively large impacts and they directly
new beginning.
impact long-term performance.

Manufacturing portland cement is an energy intensive

Designing Sustainable Concrete
process that requires crushing, grinding, and heat-
ing raw materials and grinding the clinker at the end
Sustainability is not an accident. Design plays a very of the process. It also has a high CO2 burden, as the
strong role in ensuring that the constructed concrete decomposition of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) rock
pavement begins its life with sustainability in mind, into calcium oxide (CaO) and CO2 is an inherent part
which requires a thoughtful approach to the design of of the process. The environmental burdens associated
the whole pavement. The designer must follow several with a concrete pavement can be reduced by any com-
principles: bination of five actions:

98 Ch. 11. CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
Make the manufacturing process more efficient life-cycle environmental footprint (e.g., embodied
energy and GHG emissions) must be one of the perfor-
Reduce the amount of portland cement clinker in mance requirements considered.
the cement

Reduce the amount of cement in the concrete mixture Construction

Use less concrete in a pavement over the life cycle The construction phase is of relatively short dura-
tion when compared to the total life of a concrete
Extend the useful life of the pavement pavement. However, initial construction quality has
SCMs are common byproducts from other industries a significant influence on the concrete pavements
that beneficially react with portland cement to enhance service life, which in turn directly impacts life-cycle
long-term performance. Thus, the effective use of economic, environmental, and social costs. What may
SCMs not only reduces the amount of portland cement be intended to be a sustainable pavement through
required, it also reduces the need to dispose of what enhanced design and optimized material selection
otherwise would be industrial waste. This is often done can turn out be be non-sustainable due to improper
at reduced economic cost. construction processes and/or a lack of quality control
which leads to premature failure.
Aggregates comprise the bulk of the volume of a
concrete mixture and generally have the lowest envi- The energy consumed during construction also needs
ronmental impact. Creating a desired aggregate grad- to be considered as well as the environmental and soci-
ing and using as large a nominal maximum aggregate etal impacts incurred during the construction phase.
size as practical for a given situation will allow the Construction processes and equipment should be opti-
reduction of the amount of cementitious materials mized to minimize fuel consumption and emissions.
required in a mixture. In general, aggregates have Environmental and societal impacts associated with
limited direct impact on the durability of a mixture the construction phase include the following:
except for D-cracking and AAR, which can be avoided Erosion and storm water runoff
through material testing and application of mitigation
strategies. Emission of CO2 and particulates through equip-
ment exhaust stacks
Recycled concrete and other construction waste can be
used as aggregates in paving concrete and supporting Emission of airborne dust particulate from con-
layers, reducing the demand for virgin aggregates and struction processes
also reducing the need to place the waste materials into
landfills. Noise generated from construction processes

Chemical admixtures are used in small quantities; Slurry run-off from wet sawing joints
therefore. their direct environmental impact is small. Increased road user cost due to traffic delays caused
Their overall impact, however, is large, as they can be by construction
used to significantly reduce the amount of cementi-
tious material required to achieve performance, and
they can markedly improve potential durability of a The Use Phase
mixture. The use phase, particularly the traffic using the facility,
has the largest life-cycle impact on the environment.
The goal of mix proportioning is to find the com-
These impacts include not only energy consumption
binations of available and specified materials that
and emissions but also noise, run-off, and temperature.
will ensure that a mixture is cost effective, meets all
required performance requirements, and does this at Vehicle fuel consumption depends on many fac-
the lowest environmental and social cost over the life tors that are the same regardless of pavement type.
cycle. In the case of sustainable design, reducing the However, pavement roughness, surface texture, and

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 11. CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS 99
stiffness can be controlled by the managing agency, End of Life
which has the ability to design, construct, and main- At the end of life, a concrete pavement should be
tain a pavement surface that will minimize the eco- completely recycled. The ultimate goal of recycling is
nomic, environmental, and social impact of vehicle to develop a zero waste stream utilizing all byproduct
operations. materials in the rehabilitation or reconstruction of
Other use phase factors that warrant consideration a concrete pavement. Not only is this economically
include solar reflectance, lighting needs, long-term advantageous, local recycling minimizes environmental
concrete carbonation, water run-off, and traffic delays. impact by reducing the carbon footprint, embodied
energy, and emissions as well as enhancing social good
by reducing the need for landfills and the extraction of
Pavement Renewal nonrenewable raw materials. The concept of recycling
Preservation and rehabilitation play an important role must be viewed as a cradle-to-cradle undertaking.
in ensuring pavement longevity while maintaining an
An added benefit of recycling concrete is the potential
acceptable level of serviceability. Long-lasting pave-
to reduce atmospheric CO2 through carbon sequestra-
ments reduce future investment in new materials and
tion, or carbonation. Typical environmental conditions
construction, thus minimizing economic, environmen-
in a pavement subsurface base system are favorable
tal, and social impact over the life cycle. A well main-
for accelerated carbon sequestration, thus recovering
tained concrete pavement will remain in a smooth,
up to 50 percent of the CO2 released during cement
safe, and quiet condition for a greater duration of its
life, thus increasing the fuel efficiency of vehicles,
reducing crashes, and minimizing social impact due to Hydraulic cement concrete can easily be processed
noise. into RCA which has added value as an aggregate
replacement in new concrete, as a dense graded base
Renewal strategies that can be applied to concrete
material, as drainable base material, and as fine aggre-
pavements to maintain serviceability over the design
gate. The quality of RCA concrete depends primarily
life include preventive maintenance and rehabilita-
on the amount of mortar that remains attached to the
tion. Preventive maintenance is a planned strategy
original aggregate. The mechanical properties of RCA
employing treatments that extend pavement life gener-
are a function of the quality and size of the particles.
ally without increasing structural capacity. Pavement
Generally RCA can be processed to have more than
rehabilitation adds some structural capacity, usually
adequate values of abrasion resistance, soundness, and
through the application of additional pavement thick-
bearing strength.
ness in the form of an overlay.

Initially, pavement condition decreases slightly with

Urban Environment
time as the pavement ages and is subjected to traffic. If
left unattended after this initial phase of the pavement The infrastructure needs of densely populated urban
life, performance decreases at an increasing rate before areas are significant. The include pavements, side-
finally leveling off once it has reached a poor condi- walks, water and sewer utilities, and power transmis-
tion. Preventive maintenance is applicable during the sion lines. Such systems are extremely sensitive to
initial phase when the pavement is in relatively good disruption, which can have large social impacts when
condition and has significant remaining life. Pave- natural or manmade disasters occur. Pavements repre-
ment rehabilitation is appropriate once the pavement sent a key element in this infrastructure. Traffic con-
condition has dropped to a point where it is no longer gestion and delays, smog, safety concerns, and even
effective to apply preventive maintenance. Reconstruc- aesthetics play a greater role in urban areas because
tion is ultimately the only suitable alternative once the any impact has the ability to affect a larger segment
pavement condition has dropped below a given level. of the community and the environment as a whole.
Thus, potential strategies that may be cost prohibitive
in a rural location may now become cost effective, and

100 Ch. 11. CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice
strategies that would not have been considered before and guide innovation. Many product and service
may now be applicable when the societal impacts are manufacturers make claims about the sustainability
considered. or greenness of their products and processes. It can
be difficult for an owner, agency, consultant, contrac-
One such example is the heat island effect, which tor, or specifier to sort through these claims without
occurs where there is a local area of elevated tem- an accurate, repeatable, and objective system to assist
perature located within a region of relatively cooler them in their selection. In order to make the most
temperatures. Because of the greater density of paved informed design decisions with regard to sustainability,
and covered surfaces in urban environments, the heat decision makers must employ a tool or tools that allow
island effect occurs most frequently in urban areas. The comparison of different design choices.
effects of urban heat islands are broad, not only result-
ing in increased levels of discomfort but also occasion- No one tool is currently available that simultane-
ally having an impact on human health. One strategy ously considers economic, environmental, and soci-
for mitigating the urban heat island effect is using etal impacts. Economic impacts are often assessed
reflective paving materials, including conventional separately through life-cycle cost analysis (LCCA).
concrete. Additives that can further increase the SRI of Environmental impacts can be examined through a
concrete, such as slag cement or light-colored fly ash, life-cycle assessment (LCA). Tools to assess societal
are also recommended. impacts are still in their infancy.

There are additional benefits in using light-colored To address this need, a number of pavement sustain-
concrete pavements. Light-colored pavements can ability rating systems are emerging. Rating systems will
also improve safety by improving night visibility while often use elements of the LCCA and LCA, integrated
reducing artificial lighting requirements, thus saving with other environmental and societal impacts, to
energy and reducing emissions. In urban environ- assign points to alternatives in an attempt to assess
ments, photocatalytic cements and/or coatings may overall sustainability.
be a viable option to help maintain highly reflective
2. Innovation
Precipitation runs off hard, impermeable surfaces (such
Dramatic improvements in concrete pavement sustain-
as pavements) much faster than off undeveloped or
ability will require the adoption of innovations. Some
vegetated ones. The concern from the standpoint of
innovative approaches have been used in demonstra-
environmental impact is that storm water systems will
tion projects and show promise for implementation.
be overwhelmed when large areas of vegetation are
Others still require research.
replaced with paved or hard surfaces, resulting not
only in flooding but also in erosion and the transport Several technologies have been adopted in response to
of pollution into nearby surface waters. Typical storm implementing sustainability principles. These include
water management techniques, such as retention the following:
ponds, are difficult to implement in urban areas due to
lack of available land. Thus, sanitary sewers often are Changes in cementitious materials systems and
used to handle storm water, thus resulting in increased mixture proportioning
needs for water treatment and/or release of untreated
In-situ concrete recycling
water. For these reasons, innovative pavement solu-
tions are acutely needed in urban areas, including the Recycling water at the concrete plant
use of pervious concrete pavement surfaces.
Pervious concrete

Assessment Next generation quiet texturing

It is essential that the sustainable features of pavements Precast paving units
be assessed and quantified to recognize improvement

Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice Ch. 11. CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS 101
Technologies at the demonstration stage include the Processes to capture mercury in the cement manu-
following: facturing process

Two-lift construction Mixtures that have self-healing capabilities

Photocatalytic cements Smart pavements that monitor their condition and

report when they are getting stressed
Inclusion of RAP in concrete mixtures
Pavements that generate electricity to power adja-
Bubbling cement plant exhaust gases through pools cent neighborhoods
to grow algae from the CO2, which is then dried
and burned in the kiln as fuel Geothermal heat under the pavement being cap-
tured to melt snow
Further advances are just over the horizon:
Pervious shoulders with bacteria in them that will
Low-carbon to carbon-sequestering cements treat water as it travels through the pavement
Alternative sources of raw materials for portland Specifications and contractual systems need to be
cement manufacture that will not involve the developed and implemented that will encourage
decomposition of carbonate rock implementation of promising approaches. Coupled to
Energy efficient devices to convert CO2 to solid this is a great need to educate and train designers and
carbon fiber, including carbon nanotubes practitioners. There is plenty of challenging, exciting
work yet to be done.

102 Ch. 11. CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS Sustainable Concrete Pavements A Manual of Practice